Five architects in finalist competition for $8.5 billion O’Hare Global Terminal


Chicago has invited the public’spublic feedback to select the lead architect for O’Hare Airport’s $8.5 billion expansion.

The city has unveiled the designs of five architecture finalists with renderings and models representing the potential future O’Hare Global Terminal.

The five proposing teams are: Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners; Foster Epstein Moreno Joint Venture Partners; Santiago Calatrava LLC; Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill (SOM); and Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners.

The city says this is first time it has involved public feedback in a design competition at its airports. At 2.25 million square feet, O’Hare’s new terminal will be among the largest terminals built in the U.S. Voting is open until Jan. 23.

“As the city that makes no little plans, Chicago is taking a bold step forward to choose the architect team that will set the course for O’Hare’s biggest transformation yet,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement. “This design competition celebrates our tradition of innovation and world-leading architectural history. As we move forward with the O’Hare expansion, we invite our residents and travelers to weigh in on one of the largest terminals in the country.”

The public can view the new terminal designs, and share their feedback through Jan. 23 by visiting terminal models at the Chicago Architecture Center (CAC), by visiting a special exhibit at O’Hare’s Terminal 2, or by viewing online at

The feedback survey includes five questions about the design concepts, as well as the new terminal features and expansion plan. This feedback will be considered in the final architect selection.

The search for a lead architect was launched by a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) in June 2018 by the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) through the Chicago Department of Procurement Services (DPS). In response, 12 teams submitted Statements of Qualifications, and five teams were later shortlisted based on the city’s evaluation. The City’s intention is to select two design teams: one to design the O’Hare Global Terminal and Concourse; and another to design two new satellite concourses.


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