Navy Pier Centennial Vision Design Competition

SCB’s planning group participated in the Navy Pier Centennial Vision Design Competition, as the local master planning/urban design expert within the Aedas/Martha Schwartz Partners team. Out of the 52 international teams that submitted proposals, our team advanced through two selection processes to emerge as one of the five finalists to re-imagine and develop urban design plans for five major public spaces at the Pier.


Chicago, IL


Planning /
Urban Design + Master Plans /

The Gateway Park entrance was envisioned as a new and exciting place of arrival with three distinct park zones: the central plaza, the southern sustainable wetland “scoop,” and the intermodal bus and gondola station zone. The Pier Park and Crystal Gardens were imagined as a magical Alice in Wonderland landscape with billowing mushroom top canopies and undulating hills of green and red play areas. An expansive ramp launched off the Pier Garden second level into a system of floating decks and gardens that expanded the south dock to bring the Navy Pier visitor to the water’s edge.

Throughout the project, key elements integrated into the plan included quality public space, transportation access, efficient site circulation, and connectivity to the surrounding neighborhood.