University Center of Lake County

Grayslake, Illinois / United States of America

An academic center offers baccalaureate and graduate degree programs from twenty Illinois higher education institutions and enhances the client’s visibility. Five “houses” surround an outdoor courtyard, while large and small gaps within and between the houses break up the massing, suggesting a multi-building campus. The conference center includes flexible meeting spaces (e.g., multi-purpose room divides into three smaller spaces), enabling academic and professional uses.

The key design challenge was harmonizing with existing facilities on a community college campus, while distinguishing the center as a distinct entity and appealing to its audience of working professionals. The use of brick materially complements existing facilities, yet its arrangement differentiates the center. The south façade, which embraces the courtyard, features metal bands that weave in and out of the exterior curtain wall to create balconies and bay windows. The bands carry through to the interior to define the atrium balconies and a spiral staircase.

Architect of Record

Legat Architects, Inc.

Associate Architect



Illinois Capital Development Board

General Contractor

Henry Bros. Co.


  • Globetrotters Engineering
  • Rubinos & Mesia Engineers, Inc.
  • Manhard Consulting, Ltd.