A world-class leader in technology, industrial design and architecture, the IIT owes much of its look to Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the famed mid-century architect who fled the Nazis in Germany for Chicago in 1938. From 1940 until his retirement in 1958, he designed 22 IIT buildings that reflected his tenets of architecture, combining simple, black-metal frames with glass and brick infills. SR Crown Hall is the rock star. Check the website to see if campus tours are being offered.
Mies van der Rohe isn’t the only architectural hero whose works are on display here. Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas designed the 2003 McCormick Tribune Campus Center with its simple lines and striking en-tubing of the L tracks that run overhead. Helmut Jahn designed the funky State Street Village residence halls.