Apple’s upcoming Chicago store will be an open, glass-encased structure, suggested a report from Chicago Tribune on Tuesday. Citing a government source, the report says the upcoming store will cover a 20,000-square-foot area of the city’s North Michigan Avenue shopping district.
Apple Store or “glass-sheathed temple”
The new Apple Store will stand on the north bank of the Chicago River. The report describes the store as a “glass-sheathed temple of computing” after getting to know the plans of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development.
No single company has been officially assigned the architectural renderings, but there are obvious similarities between the structure and existing Apple Stores. For example, the glass-walled and flat-roofed “Stanford 2” store in California is mirrored in one of the main entry pavilions, while the two central supports of the building bear a resemblance to Apple’s future San Francisco flagship store.
The building, on completion, will feature a street-level foyer that will flow down to a sales floor just off the river walk. There will be two grand staircases for customers, similar to the Apple store located in San Francisco, or they can choose to travel by elevator.
Norman Foster of Foster + Partners, the award-winning architectural firm, reportedly designed the store. The same firm was chosen to design Apple’s Campus 2 headquarters in Cupertino. The materials commonly used in modern Apple buildings are incorporated into the plans, including a carbon fiber roof to provide natural cooling. Both the structural elements and design flourishes make use of glass that has been featured prominently throughout.
The glass structure will be built on an abandoned food court, as mentioned in a draft report. Zeller Realty group is the current owner of the property and will submit its proposal to the Chicago Plan Commission on Thursday. It will be a mere formality as the commission already granted its approval on Monday.
Fully solar powered
Meanwhile Apple’s first Singapore store will be completely solar-powered. Sunseap Group is a solar energy developer the Cupertino-based tech giant partnered with for the acquisition of 100% renewable electricity after the project goes live.
Apple’s new retail store will make use of rooftop solar panels on 800 buildings for the generation of 50 megawatts (MW) of total renewable energy, sufficient to power up to 9,000 homes. However, the Apple Store will only burn 33MW of the project’s capacity.