Trades, Transportation and Technology: Design for Career-Ready Education

This Live Event happened on August 22, 2019 (5:30pm - 7:30pm CST)

The Education KC invites you to explore the latest trends in design for “career-ready education”. We will learn about new local buildings created to bridge the “skills gap” by meeting the needs of students and the changing demands of the economy. Join us for a tour of a unique, ultra-water-efficient training facility in the West Loop, and a review of the two new career centers provided through the City Colleges of Chicago:

Plumbers Local 130 UA Training Center; designed by Gensler
This new facility celebrates tradition while propelling the trade into the next century of innovation. It aims to become a living laboratory for apprentices to gain hands-on experience with the industry’s top tech. The new 48,000 facility houses six “wetlabs” and hundreds of fully functioning training fixtures but uses less water than a single-family house. In addition to water conservation, the new building reduces its energy footprint by employing an array of sustainable technologies. All classrooms and wetlabs are naturally lit, and the main shop space features a north-facing clerestory, minimizing the need for artificial lighting. Materials and labor were locally sourced when available, and the building itself is 100% American-made.

City Colleges of Chicago, Richard Daley College, Manufacturing, Technology and Engineering Center, 7500 South Pulaski Road; designed by JGMA
The Manufacturing, Technology and Engineering Center (MTEC) uses transparency to showcase machines, equipment, and products integral to the learning objectives of the college, as well as provide a visual connection to the surrounding community. The form was also inspired by the constant and linear flow of the manufacturing process. It spans 76th Street with a bridge that links the south and north campus of Daley College: the underside has been painted caution yellow which is commonly seen in manufacturing. Paths under the bridge lead students through a landscape which creates a new entrance for both the MTEC and the campus itself. This project challenges the latent stereotypes of a community college and alters the psychology of simply crossing the street to go to class.

City Colleges of Chicago, Olive-Harvey College, Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics Center at 10001 South Woodlawn Avenue; designed by FGM Architects
The TDL Center is one of the first of its kind in Illinois. Every aspect of the center’s design supports City Colleges of Chicago mission to use cutting-edge technology and real-world scenarios to ensure graduates “hit the ground running.” As part of itrs College to Careers program, the center can train up to 6,000 students each year for jobs in some of the region’s fastest-growing industries. Hands-on learning laboratories were developed in collaboration with City Colleges faculty, staff, and students. Industry partners are regularly consulted on workforce demand and best-in-class operations.




Event Sponsors:

The American Institute of Architects Chicago (AIA Chicago) is the largest chapter of licensed architects, architectural interns, and allied professionals within AIA Illinois, and the second largest AIA chapter in the country.

AIA Chicago offers lectures and continuing education courses; numerous award programs; specialized, issue-specific Knowledge Communities; advocacy for architects; daily communications online and through its in-house magazine, Chicago Architect; and help for consumers looking for an architect. Learn more at