- McDonald's recently opened its redesigned flagship store in Chicago and it's dominated by wood and cross-laminated timber (CLT).
The new building, which opened August 9 on the site of the former Rock N Roll McDonald's in Chicago's River North District, is a steel and timber structure designed by Chicago-based Ross Barney Architects
. The LEED-certified building has many sustainable elements - including CLT.
The 19,000-square-foot building is part of McDonald's "Experience the Future" revamp and features self-order kiosks, table service, mobile order & pay, and delivery. Solar panels help power LED lights, efficient kitchen & heating, and air conditioning.
McDonald's says the location will offer a look at what all locations will be like by 2020. The restaurant chain is investing $317 million in Illinois and $3 billion in modernization efforts nationwide through 2020.
Around 70 trees are planted across the property, including drought-resistant species to help reduce irrigation and storm-water runoff. A double-height interior features a simple palette of pale wood, grey surfaces, and black furniture. The furniture and layout were designed by Australia's Landini Associates
, who has worked with McDonald's on previous projects.
The restaurant is open 24 hours a day and seven days a week.
Ross Barney Architects was founded in 1981 and known for completing the Chicago Riverwalk and one of the city's transit stations.
Cross-laminated timber and mass timber construction has been on the rise throughout the U.S. CLT can be used to construct buildings of equal strength and fire-resistance as those made of steel and concrete. It has fueled the passions of architects and environmentalists, who believe it to be a much greener method for housing the world's growing population.
Proposals for new projects include a 500,000-sq-ft skyscraper in New Jersey, a 100-story tower in London, a 40-story building in Stockholm, and a residential complex in Vancouver. An 18-story CLT wood structure, a student residence at the University of British Columbia, is nearing completion.