Lurie Garden, Millennium Park; Chicago, Illinois

Lurie Garden, Millennium Park; Chicago, Illinois

Photo: Civic Arts Project
Photo: Civic Arts Project


Location: Millennium Park, Chicago
Size: 5 Acres
Design Landscape Architect: Gustafson Guthrie Nichol
Local Landscape Architect: Terry Guen Design Associates
Planting Design: Piet Oudolf
Design Collaborator: Robert Israel
Year Built: 2004

+/- $9,000,000

The Lurie Garden is an award-winning space that provides a lush and textured counterpoint to the surrounding architectural spaces of Millennium Park.

Key Details:

The garden consists of four components: the Shoulder Hedge and Frame, the Light Plate, the Dark Plate, and the Seam.  Each piece of the garden was composed to have a different function and represents components of Chicago’s culture and history.

The planting design of the gardens is intended to showcase the native ecological systems of the Chicago region.   The mix of perennials, bulbs, and grasses provide four-season color and texture.  The plants were also selected because they provide habitat for native wildlife and reduce irrigation needs.  The significant addition of vegetation to the space helps sequester over 55 tons of carbon annually.

The park is built on top of a parking garage, making it a green roof.  This made the design and construction much more complex and several efforts had to be made to minimize structural loading of the park on the bridge.   This includes the use of Styrofoam in lieu of earthen fill to create the mounding.

If You Go:

The Lurie Garden is part of heavily visited Millennium Park and directly adjacent to the Downtown CBD.  It is near several ‘L’ stops and the Millennium Park Metra station.


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