The Barack Obama Foundation has issued a formal Request for Proposal (RFP) to seven architectural firms, one of which will ultimately be selected to design the Obama Presidential Center (OPC) on the South Side of Chicago.
Chicago-based John Ronan is the only local architect to have been issued with a request to develop a design proposal for the Obama Presidential Center.
Ronan will be competing against London-based David Adjaye, New York studios Diller Scofidio + Renfro, SHoP Architects and Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, Italian architect Renzo Piano, and Scandinavian firm Snøhetta.
The building will include a library containing Obama's presidential archives and a museum dedicated to his presidency. The project will be funded by private donations. The structure, to be built after Obama's final term ends, will be the 14th official presidential library in the US, each dedicated to presenting documents and artefacts related to a former president.
“The Foundation received submissions from an impressive list of architects with a range of styles, expertise, and experience,” said Martin Nesbitt, chairman of the Obama Foundation. “These finalists offer a variety of backgrounds and styles, and any one of them would be an excellent choice. We are excited to see this process moving forward because the Obama Presidential Center will be so much more than a library – this facility will seek to inspire citizens across the globe to better their communities, their countries, and their world.”
The Obama Foundation released a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) on August 26 of this year and asked that responses be submitted by September 16. The Foundation and its advisers reviewed and summarized the responses and made recommendations to the President and First Lady.
The architect will be responsible for designing the Obama Presidential Center, a facility which will include a library holding the Presidential archives, a museum focusing on the Obama Presidency and issues of our time, and space for programs and initiatives that advance the Foundation’s public mission.