Your resource for things to see and do in the Chicago Loop.
The Sullivan Center, better known as the Carson Pirie Scott & Co. Building was designed by Louis H. Sullivan in the late 1890s. Inspiration for the design came from plants native to the Midwestern prairie.The first section was built in 1899 on Madison Street. The second section, which is the large corner section on the intersection of State and Madison, was built between 1903 and 1904. The third section was built after that, with Daniel Burnham in charge of the job instead of Sullivan. He went on to follow Sullivan’s original construction plan, and the building was completed in 1906.
On October 1903, Schlesinger and Mayer opened a dry-goods store in the building. However, due to debt and the retirement of Mayer in 1904, the building was sold. Carson Pirie Scott moved into the building in 1905 and stayed there for over a century. Throughout the decades, Carson Pirie Scott had done many renovations on the building, including removing the cornice—which was eventually restored between 2002 and 2006. In 2007, Carson Pirie Scott had vacated the building due to the fact that it was no longer cost-effective for the company.
From 2007 to 2012, the retail space was empty, and the building was renamed The Sullivan Center. Joseph Freed and Associates, the company Carson Pirie Scott sold the building to, converted the lower two floors of the building into retail space and the upper floors were converted into office space. During this time, the cast iron ornament on the building was restored as well. Hidden within the cast iron are the initials LHS and SM for Louis H. Sullivan and the original store owners, Schlesinger and Mayer.
In 2012, the Target Company had opened up Chicago’s first CityTarget, which has now been rebranded as Target. This Target store is similar to the company’s traditional stores, but it is designed to fit the needs of the urban shopper. According to the Chicago Architecture foundation, “the space at the top corner rotunda [has been] dubbed the Zero/Zero lounge because of its site at the origin of Chicago’s street grid.”