Blessed with an increasing student enrollment and the need for more classroom space, Saint Xavier University, situated on Chicago’s Southwest Side, looked to expand into the neighboring community. When an unused, dilapidated church became available, the concept of an adaptive-reuse project began to emerge. This existing structure would become the COST PER SQ FT$135.00FEATURED IN2010 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYInterior RenovationSUB CATEGORYRenovation home of Saint Xavier University’s financial aid and advising departments.
The university wanted to maintain the liturgical character of the 1920s facility as a reminder of St. Xavier’s Catholic heritage. In conjunction with this goal, the facility had to be reorganized to serve the student-based services being provided.
The substantial interior renovation included new mechanical equipment, an elevator addition, relamping of the existing sanctuary light fixtures and the addition of exterior storm windows over the stained glass. The adaptive reuse of the existing facility followed LEED principles, carrying on the university’s commitment to the environment.
The O’Grady Center includes a refreshed color palette, improved lighting, and new flooring and systems furniture for faculty and student workers. A conference room, situated beneath the main stained-glass windows in the nave, provides a beautiful new meeting space for the university.