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Construction update: 100 feet and climbing

On a clear day, a crane rises up behind a concrete building that’s under construction. In the foreground sits a rust-colored industrial trash bin and to the right, a construction worker wearing a white hard hat and yellow safety vest looks down at a pile of building material.

September 1, 2023

It has been a season of great progress on the construction of the Obama Presidential Center. The height of the stair and elevator wells of the Museum Building have passed the halfway-point of the building—around 100 feet high—and the concrete walls and floors are following closely behind. Construction crews are now readying the Museum Building for its next critical operation: the installation of the granite and glass that will create the exterior finish of the Museum, Forum, and Library Buildings. The granite will begin to be installed after Labor Day.

The Forum and Library Building roofs are being framed and crews have begun pouring concrete. When that work is complete, the full height of the Forum and Library will be visible above the construction fence!

At the end of June, Cornell Drive was fully closed and the concrete and the asphalt roadway was removed. For the first time, it’s now possible to imagine the eventual connection between the Center’s campus and the Jackson Park lagoon. The entire east side of the campus will create rich habitats for birds and wildlife and will feature a brand new walking and bike path along the edge of the lagoon for visitors to enjoy.

On a clear day, a crane rises up behind a concrete building that’s under construction. In the foreground sits a rust-colored industrial trash bin and to the right, a construction worker wearing a white hard hat and yellow safety vest looks down at a pile of building material.

Crews working at the Southwest corner of the Obama Presidential Center Museum building.

A bulldozer sits in the middle of what was Cornell Drive, where asphalt has been removed revealing a wide dirt pathway. Trees and greenery stand between the former road and the lagoon and on the other side, a rusted metal dumpster filled with debris and various piles of construction materials dot the east side of the main construction zone.

The asphalt and concrete of what was formerly a portion of Cornell Drive has been removed to reconnect the Center’s campus to Jackson Park.

3D rendering of the Obama Presidential Center Plaza

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