About Our Building

Spertus Institute’s ten-story home is an innovative vertical campus located front and center within Chicago’s academic and cultural corridor.

Designed by Krueck Sexton Partners, the building is a contemporary gem on historic South Michigan Avenue.

Mission Centered
The lightness and openness of the design echoes Spertus Institute’s culture of inclusiveness and dedication to learning that sparks change. It reflects values that are core to us: a welcoming environment, rooted in our community, with the latest resources and technology.

Designed for Education
In a feat of architectural wizardry by Chicago-based Krueck Sexton Partners, the building’s lightness and openness belie its adaptive, education-centered, hard-working design. Spaces and features do double or triple duty, making maximum use of the building’s narrow lot while creatively serving programmatic needs.

Fosters Connection
Flexible spaces foster community, provide showcase settings for Spertus programs, and are used for revenue-generating event rentals that support institutional initiatives. Located directly across from Grant Park, the building features skyline and Lake Michigan views from nearly every window.

Spertus Institute
Exterior of a glass building.
close-up of spertus exterior
Exterior of a glass building.
Exterior of a glass building.

About the Window Wall

A Faceted Perspective
The window wall is built from 726 individual pieces of glass in 556 different shapes and sizes. Its
facets reflect the changing sky and the landscape of Grant Park, incorporating the environment and our neighborhood into our building’s design.

Emphasis on Light
A wall of windows brings in the light! This emphasis on light echoes the Spertus logo, a flame accompanied by the Hebrew phrase yehi or, which translates as “be the light. ”

Innovation with Respect for History
The buildings around Spertus were built in a period of architectural innovation just after the Chicago fire. Like them, the Spertus building is forward-looking, but with respect for its historic setting. For example, the average size of each window in the Spertus facade is consistent with the window size along South Michigan Avenue. Like the bay windows of these grand 19th- and early 20th-century buildings, our angled windows bring light deep into our interior and expand the views of outside.

Photos above by Angie McMonigal.


AIA Illinois Chapter | 200 Great Places in Illinois

Commission on Chicago Landmarks | Preservation Excellence

Crystal Achievement Award | Most Innovative Curtain Wall

AIA Illinois Chapter | Louis Sullivan Award

AIA Chicago Chapter | Divine Detail Award

AIA Chicago Chapter | Distinguished Building Award

Chicago Commercial Real Estate | Build to Suit Project of the Year

Interior Design Magazine | Best Building of the Year Award

Chicago Athenaeum | American Architecture Award


Environmental sustainability is a core value at Spertus. In Jewish tradition, the idea is embodied in the tenets of bal tashchit or “do not destroy or waste” and tikkun olam or “repair of the world.” Through sustainable design and energy-efficient operations, Spertus honors these concepts as well as Chicago’s green initiatives. We are proud recipients of LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

In the Spertus building, windows are specially coated to reduce heat, glare, and energy usage. Ceramic enamel frits (in a dot pattern) control heat gain and glare, and, important for our location across from Grant Park in a local migratory flight path, they make the glass visible to birds, deterring bird strikes.

A green roof (planted with special vegetation) manages storm water, absorbs air pollution, and keeps the building cool in the summer. This helps mitigate the urban heat effect, a phenomenon that causes the city to be 2 to 10 degrees hotter than nearby rural areas.

Through measures including high performance lighting and demand-based ventilation, the building achieves a 29% reduction in energy consumption, resulting in 550 tons of avoided CO2 per year. Healthy materials, high-efficiency air filtration, and special humidity controls provide quality indoor air for the welfare of visitors, students, and staff.


Hold Your Event at Our Facility

Venue SIX10 is the event management division of Spertus Institute. Their experienced, creative, and capable team handles our space rental and event planning. We invite you to find out more.