About Starship Chicago II
Chicago’s postmodern people’s palace, the seventeenth-floor James R. Thompson Center, has been spared the wrecking ball.
As the controversial icon is radically transformed from a public office building into Google’s downtown headquarters, some of the building’s most notable features, including the perennially controversial color scheme, will be replaced. The central atrium will remain open to the public but will cease to be a publicly owned space.
The project raises fundamental questions about the urban environment: What is the future of public space in the city? How does a change in aesthetics impact architectural integrity? To whom does the city belong?
Through interviews with the key architects, developers, city officials, and preservationists involved in this ongoing saga, an existential question emerges: What gives a building soul?
Featuring interviews with
Elizabeth Blasius, Architectural Historian, Preservation Futures
Ben Capp, President (Retired) Wolverine Stone Company
Phil Castillo, Managing Director, Jahn/
Maurice Cox, Commissioner, Department of Planning and Development
Stewart Hicks, Associate Professor of Architecture, University of Illinois Chicago
Evan Jahn, President, Jahn/
Bonnie McDonald, President & CEO, Landmarks Illinois
Mike Reschke, Chairman & CEO, The Prime Group
Ward Miller, Executive Director, Preservation Chicago
Director & Producer: Nathan Eddy
Cinematography: Brian Cagle
Editor: Leonardo Franke
Music: Dickey Doo
Aerial Photography: John Zhu