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Many of the most recognizable tall buildings dotting our skylines are more than 50 years old. How do we ensure these icons remain operable, profitable and vital to our cities for years to come? When does it make sense to tear down and build anew?

$20 public
$15 CAC members
Gand Lecture Hall, 111 E. Wacker Dr.

Beginning with rapid-fire presentations and ending in a moderated discussion, our panel of design, engineering, and development experts reveals the most successful and sustainable approaches to re-positioning tall buildings in our dense urban centers. This is the latest installment of our Building Tall lecture series, hosted by the CAC and the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH). This series uncovers everything from the physics to the financials of how skyscrapers work and feature diverse groups of experts from the architecture, engineering, urban planning and real estate development fields.

Program Moderator: Antony Wood

Antony Wood

Antony Wood is the executive director of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH), a position he has held since 2006. His passion for tall buildings developed in the 1990s, when he was working as an architect in the UK and Asia. Antony is a professor at Illinois Institute of Technology, the author of numerous publications in the field of tall buildings and a speaker at conferences around the world.

Program Speaker: Benjy Ward

Benjy Ward

Benjy is a Registered Architect with more than 20 years of varied design experience. A Principal and Firmwide Design Leader in Gensler’s Chicago office, he previously served as Regional Design Leader in the firm’s Shanghai office. Benjy brings a global perspective to his work, which includes international airports, luxury retail, urban planning and high-rise, mixed-use buildings. He applies a unique, analysis-driven design process to every project, specializing in 3-D and computational applications to better understand space and building performance. Benjy's commitment to delivering innovative solutions led to the creation of Poppy Seed, a mobile application that maps memories and moods to help understand urban spaces.

Program Speaker: Ken Oen

Ken Oen

Ken Oen has worked with Gilsanz Murray Steficek (GMS) since 1998. Some of his projects include the residential conversion of an iconic landmarked office tower, a unique gallery experience for a luxury automobile manufacturer, retail renovations on 5th Avenue in the plaza district, as well as renovations at a student center at Quinnipiac University and at the library in the village of Mamaroneck, NY. At GMS, Ken has also served as the project engineer for over 20 bank renovations and alterations, and he has engineered and inspected replacement columns to make room for a 900 seat auditorium in the 280,000 sf UFT headquarters.

AIA/CES Credit: 1 LU

  • Ticket price includes entrance to the Chicago Architecture Center on the day of the event.
  • Discount tickets are available with a valid student ID for $12 at the CAC Box Office.

Program Partner: CTBUH