Lake Point Tower is one of Chicago’s unique skyscrapers. Its distinct shape and location make it a remarkable landmark. Its design was futuristic at the time and even today the 1960s tower still looks modern.
The building was designed by John Heinrich and George Schipporeit, who were both students of Mies van der Rohe. The design for Lake Point Tower was partially derived from a sketch Mies van der Rohe made in 1921.
The original proposal made by Schipporeit and Heinrich consisted of a building with four wings, but was ultimately replaced by a design which included only three wings.The advantages of the latter were a shorter construction time and a 120 degree angle between the wings, so that the apartments would not face each other. The design also offered less surface area exposed to direct wind loads in comparison to the conventional rectangular designs.
Lake Point Tower was completed in 1968 and was at the time the tallest apartment building in the world, reaching a height of 196 meters (645 feet). The plan to construct two other similarly shaped towers on both sides were never realised. The Tower still stands on its own near Lake Michigan’s shore, a bit distant from the downtown cluster of high-rises. This makes it possible to view the bronze curtain walls of Lake Point Tower from all sides.