The Burnham Plan Centennial - Bold Plans, Big Dreams

Calendar & Projects


BURNHAM 2.0: A Composite Plan for the High Speed Rail City

BURNHAM 2.0:  A Composite Plan for the High Speed Rail City

Exhibit :

One of the most imposing challenges Chicago will face in the 21st century is mobility—finding faster, more efficient, and more sustainable ways to move people and materials. The Chicago Architectural Club, in partnership with the 2008 Chicago Humanities Festival: Thinking Big, has embarked on Burnham 2.0: A Composite Plan for the High-Speed Rail City, a collaborative, multi-faceted urban planning initiative that envisions the dramatic reshaping of metropolitan Chicago and the region through a regional high-speed rail system.

The Burnham 2.0 effort will incorporate three complementary elements:

1) speculative works by architectural teams;

2) an international design competition for the awarding of the Club’s biennial Burnham Prize; and

3) a complementary exhibit at the Chicago History Museum.

The Plan of Chicago was a pioneering document that influenced both the physical development of the city and the practice of comprehensive urban planning in general. Transportation, both within the city and across the region, was an important Plan element, and is sure to be a central feature of any effective effort to shape a livable, sustainable, and prosperous city in the 21st century. The Burnham 2.0 competition will ask contestants worldwide to conceive an inter-modal train terminal in Chicago’s West Loop district, as part of a proposed larger downtown complex. Results of the international design competition, launched in the summer of 2008, will be announced at the 2008 Chicago Humanities Festival in November.

On November 9, 2008, a distinguished panel of architects and designers from around the world will discuss and critique the various Burnham 2.0 works on display at the Chicago History Museum Burnham 2.0 exhibit which runs from November 8, 2008 - January 19, 2009.


Program Partners

Chicago Architectural Club

The history of the Chicago Architectural Club runs side-by-side with the development of the Chicago school of architecture. From its founding in 1885 as an architectural sketch club, to today's rich schedule of discussions, competitions and exhibitions, the CAC has ...[MORE]

Chicago History Museum

The Chicago History Museum stands at the crossroads of America's past and its future. If you live in Chicago or visit here and are curious about the city's past, present, and future, the Museum should be your first stop. The ...[MORE]

This program was offered on these dates:
Exhibit : Saturday, November 8, 2008 to Monday, January 19, 2009

Chicago Architectural Club

Contact: David Goodman, or Romina Canna,


Chicago History Museum
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The Burnham Plan Centennial
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