Statement on Prentice Landmark Decision
Northwestern University reacts to Chicago Landmarks Commission rulingFebruary 7, 2013
Statement by Eugene S. Sunshine, Senior Vice President for Business and Finance
Northwestern University is pleased that the Chicago Commission on Landmarks today voted to reject giving final landmark status to the former Prentice Women’s Hospital building, which is now owned by the University. We appreciate very much the thoughtful consideration that the commissioners and staff of the Chicago Commission on Landmarks, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Alderman Brendan Reilly have given to this issue.
Northwestern can now move forward with its plans to build a new, state-of-the-art biomedical research facility on that site. The University and its affiliated hospitals and physicians have committed to investing approximately $1 billion in private funds to creating the new research complex, with the new facility on the former Prentice site as the linchpin of the initiative. Doing so will create approximately 2,500 construction jobs, 2,000 full-time jobs, have an annual economic impact of nearly $400 million on the area and make Chicago a global leader in medical science.
The new building on the Prentice site will be connected on a floor-by-floor basis with the existing University research building just to the west of the site. Doing so will bring researchers together and thereby enhance the chances of finding breakthroughs in cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and neurodegenerative disorders, among others. The site is the linchpin for what will be a major new medical research hub.
Northwestern will conduct a design competition, starting in a number of months, for the new biomedical research facility. The University will invite many of the world’s best architectural firms, including Chicago firms, with substantial accomplishments in designing biomedical research or similar buildings to submit expressions of interest and statements of qualifications.
The University also will maintain its strong partnerships with the city and the Streeterville community and area businesses to develop ways that Northwestern can benefit the neighborhood and the University’s students, faculty and staff on our Chicago campus.