Protecting a 78 acre site of virgin oak forest led to a planning solution that would provide unobstructed views and minimize the footprint of the building. In lieu of surface parking, the solution is a six level, 960 car parking structure, rare in suburban and exurban developments, that is wrapped by a four level, 300,000 sf office building. An unusual floor-to-floor height of 15 feet in the office areas permits offices away from the perimeter to be elevated 18 inches in order to afford clear views to the exterior. The ceilings of the office wings slope upwards to the perimeter to enhance the natural day lighting and to maximize views out. Offices on the interior also have natural light via a sky lit well between the offices and the parking garage.

Located centrally in the garage and connecting the office wings is a three dimensional Sol Lewitt inspired concrete grid containing a stairwell that mediates between the office floors and the garage floors, which are 10 feet floor-to-floor; this stair serves as the front door entry for the employees.

The post-tensioned concrete structure is clad with limestone colored precast concrete and red sandstone from India.

Completed: 1992
Architect: Lohan Associates

Safety-Kleen Corporate HQ, Elgin, Illinois