Skip to content

Construction update: Granite panels are going up

A view of the Museum Building rising to the sky on the site of the Obama Presidential Center. Cranes are in the sky as work continues on the garage rooftop. Construction equipment is scattered throughout.

October 16, 2023 

The days may be getting cooler, but things are heating up at the Obama Presidential Center! Crews onsite are preparing to install the first granite panels that will clad the Museum Building.  This will be the most visible change in the next few months, but the Museum and Forum Buildings are also experiencing a lot of changes. Steel framing of the Auditorium has begun and the footprint of the Hadiya Pendleton Winter Garden can be understood for the first time. 

Down at the Lower Level, framing of the office space is in full swing. As shoring is removed, the future public spaces at the lower and street level of the Museum Building are also becoming defined. The relationship between the different spaces and the volume of the spaces is becoming distinguishable. Natural light is also starting to peek through. Work also continues on the Museum structure, with the elevator and stair cores now rising up to Level 6 at just over 150 feet tall. The floor slab for the top Exhibit Gallery will be poured later this month. The construction trailers and "huddle tent" that have served as the projects operations base for the last two years is being decommissioned so that the south end of the site can be prepared for construction of the Programs & Athletic Center, which will start in early 2024.

A view of the Museum Building rising to the sky on the site of the Obama Presidential Center. Cranes are in the sky as work continues on the garage rooftop. Construction equipment is scattered throughout.
Five workers stand on the platform in the north end of the Hadiya Pendleton Winter Garden. The columns on the left will frame the walls of the auditorium. Construction equipment is scattered throughout the building.
3D rendering of the Obama Presidential Center Plaza

Follow Along

Sign up for our new Obama Presidential Center Explorer email series and come along for the journey as we build the Center. We’ll have exclusive updates and previews all the way through our Grand Opening in 2025.

Help build the Obama Presidential Center

Your donation makes it possible for us to build a world-class museum, library, and gathering spaces on Chicago’s South Side.

Donate to the Barack Obama Foundation. The Barack Obama Foundation is registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (EIN 46-4950751).

More about the Obama Presidential Center

2024.4.10 Home Court ext render aerial with correct logo

Featuring a world-class museum, public library, and gathering spaces, the Obama Presidential Center is set to open in Chicago in 2026.

Learn more
Contact-OPC-Card

Get a behind-the-scenes look into how we're building the new Obama Presidential Center, set to open in 2026.

Learn more