Located one block off Chicago's Magnificent Mile, The Clare at Water Tower offers both housing for seniors and classroom space for Loyola University.
The project allows Loyola to expand its academic facilities while also providing housing for seniors, all while developing a low-impact use for an urban site. The design of the 54-story building maximizes views of Chicago’s Water Tower District and Lake Michigan.
Loyola’s classrooms occupy the first three floors, with the remainder dedicated to the senior living component. Thirty-two levels house independent living while there are two floors for skilled nursing, one floor for dementia care, and three floors for assisted living. Other levels house a spa and fitness center and public amenities such as dining, libraries, kitchens, and administration space.
The Clare at Water Tower addresses the needs of the senior community by maintaining visual and auditory cues through the use of atrium spaces. These spaces allow the natural connectivity of living, dining and social activities while working within the space limits of a high-rise format—including double or triple the floor-to-ceiling height of a typical community space. Ancillary seating areas and intimate furniture groupings are connected to the atrium, allowing for conversation and preserving a comfortable scale for various social functions.
PRDG successfully stacked skilled care, assisted living, independent living units and their respective support functions within a uniform 12,600-square-foot plate. Our solution resulted in a highly efficient design with significant short travel distances. The relatively small floor plate inherently integrates exterior views as well as permits resident orientation to conditions outside. This relationship represents a welcome change from traditional long corridors and the potentially confusing maze of required internal programmatic spaces.