One East Wacker Drive | Neighborhood: Downtown
The Kemper Building was the world’s tallest marble-clad office building when it opened and remains among the city’s 75 tallest buildings. It featured Chicago’s first 360-degree public observation deck, including dramatic views of the Chicago River and other nearby buildings—although this attraction was closed within 10 years of opening. The striking white exterior and strong verticality conveyed by the uninterrupted piers place it squarely within the city’s modernist tradition. The 1990 renovation enhanced the entries and in 2012, the observation deck was opened for the first time in more than 40 years during Open House Chicago.
Behind the Scenes Access: Visit the 360 degree observation deck on the 41st floor. Closed for decades, the view from the Kemper Building has become an annual, exclusive experience for Open House Chicago visitors.
Architects: Shaw, Metz & Associates, 1962. Renovation by Lucien Lagrange Associates, 1990.