University of Chicago Law Library
This Modernist library, completed in 1960 and designed by Finnish-born architect Eero Saarinen, is his only structure in Chicago. Saarinen’s best-known works include the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and flight terminals at both Dulles and JFK International airports. The pleated glass curtain wall of the law library, which culminates in a serrated roofline, was meant to complement similar forms found in the traditional Gothic Revival architecture across campus. As part of an expansion plan in 1998, this building was considered for demolition. Instead, the decision was made to construct a more cost effective rear addition. In the recent renovation, obsolete stacks were removed to create computer resource terminals and additional study areas. A central staircase was inserted between floors two and three, and period furnishings by Saarinen and other architects of the era complete the décor.