Paul Preissner, ‘Summer Vault’, 2015, Chicago Architecture Biennial
Paul Preissner, ‘Summer Vault’, 2015, Chicago Architecture Biennial

Architects' Statement:

Summer Vault, designed by Paul Andersen of Independent Architecture and Paul Preissner of Paul Preissner Architects, in collaboration with the University of Illinois at Chicago, is a lakefront kiosk that accommodates a multitude of things. It consists of basic geometric shapes—a 12-foot-diameter barrel vault, a parallelogram, triangles—combined to create a curious, freestanding hangout within the park. The interior of the skewed vault is divided into two triangular spaces—one enclosed by expanded metal screens and doors, and one open to the air but still within the vaulting. This two-part plan allows for commerce and community to occur simultaneously. It also reflects the kiosk’s Persian origins as a 13th-century garden pavilion, while embracing its contemporary use as a seasonal commercial front and festive park retreat. Its openness allows year-round use, so that it remains active even in its retail slumber during the Chicago winter.