We have a lot cooking at LJC. Check out our recent work.



Historic Renovation | Chicago, IL



Location | Chicago, IL

Clients | Farpoint Development & JAM Productions

Size | 126,000 SF

Phase | Schematic Design

Team from LJC | George Halik, Sarah Jacobson, Jeremy Margis, Ian Wong


One of the world’s foremost treasures, the landmark Uptown Theater, designed by architects Rapp & Rapp in 1925, is being redeveloped into a state-of-the-art entertainment venue for 5800 patrons. The Lamar Johnson Collaborative leads the design team in this effort, which includes restoring the building’s exterior terra cotta façade and interior decoration while providing the amenities and experience expected by today’s audiences.   Formerly a movie and vaudeville venue, the renovated theater will stage live concerts, corporate and private events and will be a major catalyst for the continued redevelopment of this Uptown neighborhood into a major entertainment district. 



Urban Design | Orland Park, IL



Location | Orland Park, IL

Clients | Edwards Realty

Size | 641,000 SF

Phase | Master Plan Concept

Team from LJC | Lamar Johnson, Tod Desmarais, Mark Mockus,

Mariusz Klemens, Chengcheng Peng with OMNI workshop and Kimley-Horn

Transforming downtown orland park

Traditionally, the urban neighborhood is thought of as a collection of buildings held together by adjoining space. To see the site really thrive, Downtown Orland Park must become a combination of experiences which work in concert to enhance both the lifestyle of the end-users, future residents and broader community of the Village of Orland Park. The quality of the place must be challenged to exceed the market in being resilient, adaptive, and flexible. It will also serve as a catalyst for future development in the immediate area.

Downtown Orland Park is envisioned as a new community gathering place composed by pedestrian-scaled buildings supporting a mix of retail, entertainment, commercial, cultural, hospitality, and residential uses adding flexibility, strength and resiliency to Orland Park’s social and economic vitality. Today’s highly selective consumers, renters and office users are searching for an experience that provides value and high quality in a unique setting. A successful mixed-use, pedestrian environment at this location must feel authentic to Orland Park while providing an experience unavailable in the region. This development proposal crafts an aesthetically cohesive vision for the local neighborhood while complementing and strengthening the broader community as a whole.

The landscape experience for downtown Orland Park expands the existing vision that was established in the design of LaGrange Road, Ravinia Avenue and Jefferson Avenue, responding in a manner that complements future uses and proposed buildings throughout the new downtown. Specialized landscape elements include curbless streets, bike lanes, a centralized community park, public plaza, amphitheater, and a splash park which will energize the downtown and serve as a gathering place, business center, and cultural hub for Orland Park.



Mixed-Use | Chicago, IL



Location | Chicago, IL

Clients | Belgravia Group, LMC

Size | 4.5 Acres

Phase | Schematic Design

Team from LJC | Tod Desmarais, Mariusz Klemens, Michael Hanley, Sarah Hitchcock

fresh angle on an unusual Chicago site

With recent approval by City Council, a joint development venture is breathing new life into a long-dormant property on Chicago’s North Side. When completed, this residential and commercial development - bounded by Webster Avenue on the north, Elston Avenue on the southwest and the Metra train tracks on the east -  will consist of three components:

·         A seven-story, 300-unit apartment building with ground-floor retail

·         A 24,000-square-foot retail and office building facility

·         A seven-story, 66-unit condominium building with enclosed parking

LJC is engaged to design the 280,000-square-foot apartment building. The uniquely shaped site drives the building’s triangular massing and sloping roofscape, which help to orient 75% of the apartments with views to downtown Chicago.



Multi-Family Residential | Oak Brook, IL


Project info

Project Location | Oak Brook, IL

Client | Senior Lifestyle

Size | 290,000 SF

Phase | Design Development

Services | Architecture

LJC Team | George Halik, Michael Hanley, Max Komnenich, Sarah Jacobson, Rebekah Dempsey

signature brand informs sophisticated senior living

Senior Lifestyle engaged LJC to design its new flagship senior living development in Chicago’s western suburbs. The Sheridan at Oak Brook will include 200 apartments ranging in size from studios to one- and two-bedroom units. When completed in late 2020, the facility will accommodate seniors across the continuum of care with Independent Living, Assisted Living and Memory Care support.

The Sheridan’s robust portfolio of resident amenities includes physical therapy and fitness facilities, library, theater, craft studios, and in-house salon and spa. These programs will be anchored by a centralized social hub on the first floor of the facility. The Sheridan at Oak Brook will also feature both casual and formal dining environments that cater to the varied preferences of residents.

The five-story building is located within an office/retail campus that provides residents with multiple options outside the main facility. A contemporary masonry façade with private and common terraces wraps the entire campus. 



Mixed-Use | Chicago, IL



Location | Chicago, IL

Clients | R^2

Size | 120,000 SF

Phase | Schematic Design

Team from LJC | Tod Desmarais, Shannon Riddle, Sarah Hitchcock, Genevieve Wasser

mixed-use vision activates iconic morton salt site

Along the North Branch of the Chicago River, Morton Salt has stood as a familiar welcome sign to the city for nearly 100 years. Its location adjacent to Goose Island, high visibility and rich history intrigued developer R^2 to re-invent the site with creative offices and retail development while maintaining its iconic character and history. The design and preservation of the building by LJC embraces the original architectural design by Graham, Anderson, Probst & White, architects of some of Chicago’s most prominent architecture from the early 20th century including the infamous Chicago Post Office and the Merchandise Mart. LJC acknowledges the buildings’ prior use as a packaging, storage and shipping center for salt, restoring originally designed openings and adding new apertures to help activate the site and surroundings. The grit and industrial nature of the site are reflected both in the building and the landscape.

Rich history, prominent location and river access situate this development as a unique player in the Chicago market.



Retail & Multi-Family | Lombard, IL



Location | Lombard, IL

Clients | Holiday Properties

Size | 200,000 SF

Phase | Concept Design

Team from LJC | Mark Mockus, Mariusz Klemens, Tod Desmarais, Sarah Hitchcock

Flexible framework for downtown lombard siTe

The Village of Lombard initiated an RFP that’s goal was to attract new businesses to it’s awaking downtown. LJC worked hand-in-hand with a local boutique grocery store that wanted a presence in the city center. Alone, the grocery store could not be built alone and required to be subsidized. LJC sought out a developer to undertake this unique downtown opportunity for the future of Lombard. LJC created a plan that that proposes a 120-unit multi-family residential with an amenity deck and ground floor, corner coffee shop. This framework enables the boutique grocer to have a downtown location while providing a central location for residential living.  



Office Tower Repositioning | Chicago, IL


Project info

Project Location | Chicago, IL

Client | Confidential

Size | 1,163,990 SF

Phase | Concept

Services | Repositioning

LJC Team | Tod Desmarais, Mariusz Klemens, Jeremy Margis, Sarah Hitchcock, Lamar Johnson, Charlie Cunov

envisioning a new entry experience at one south wacker

One South Wacker occupies a bustling corner in Chicago’s downtown “Loop” business district. Completed in 1982 at the peak of the post-modern movement, the 40-story trapezoidal structure is clad in a simple, standard grid of highly reflective and opaque pieces of black, silver and copper glass in an over-sized wainscot motif. Despite a prominent Madison Street and Wacker Drive location, the building no longer retains its market prominence with nearly 20 percent vacancy and minimal street-level presence. LJC proposes transforming the building by reorienting the entry from a small portal on Wacker to a three-story, lineal lobby along Madison that creates a dialog with its northern neighbor across the street. A two-story, free-form copper screen flows from the façade through the lobby, which works both to draw pedestrians into the building and its amenities and to augment the property’s corner presence, re-establishing its stature in the city. The addition of a street-facing café and third-floor restaurant terrace form a collection of spaces that further blur the line between interior and exterior environments and invite passersby to experience a renewed One South Wacker.


Urban Design | Chicago, IL


project stats

Location | Chicago, IL

Clients | Confidential

Size | 8 Acres

Phase | Master Planning

Services | Urban Design

Team from LJC | Tod Desmarais, George Halik, Mariusz Klemens, Jeremy Margis


This site at the southern end of Chicago’s Goose Island is inherently unique --  simultaneously apart from and a part of the city. The Greyhound development promotes inclusivity and community as it complements the surrounding urban fabric. LJC’s vision for the site establishes a plan for creating an authentic place that embraces urban diversity and responds to the needs and expectations of its diverse users. The project recognizes this is the moment to make a signature statement with this unique property – a place that’s both iconic, true to its location, and intentionally integrated in the city.

This mixed-use development will include more than 2,000 new residential units, a grocery store, 20,000 square feet of retail, 60,000 square feet of office, and a hotel. The center of the site will provide three acres of open public space connecting Halsted Street with a new river walk experience along the eastern and southern edge of the site. The integration of town homes at the podium level helps contextualize the project with the Halsted corridor and adjacent neighborhood.



Interior Architecture | Chicago, IL



Location | Chicago, IL

Client | BlackEdge Capital

Size | 9,400 SF

Phase | Complete

Team from LJC | Lance Yeary and Charlie Cunov

respite within the intensity of a trading firm

BlackEdge Capital, a young and energetic trading and technology firm, engaged LJC to create a space that reflects their outlook: they take their work seriously but not themselves.

LJC partnered with the client to design a workplace that supports the functionality and technology required for trading operations within a refined, serene environment. Large portions of the floor plate are dedicated to communal areas such as a fitness center, cafe, and gaming area, offering relief from the frantic pace of financial work. In addition to communal areas, quiet spaces are distributed throughout the plan, ranging from an enclosed nap room to semi-private areas for relief from the demanding trading environment.

In the same way that the planning balances the intensity of the trading area with areas of respite, the interior architecture and finish/furniture palette create a dialogue between the polished detailing of the new and the industrial context of the West Loop area building. The new space celebrates the client’s vibrant and unique culture, going beyond a place of work and acting as an extension of their life.