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Koo and Associates Ltd.

Photo credit: © 2009, James Steinkamp, Steinkamp Photography
Jackie Koo. Photo credit: © 2009, James Steinkamp, Steinkamp Photography
Photo credit: Bill Richert
The Wit Hotel, at State and Lake Streets (center), embraces its environment. Photo credit: Bill Richert

Part of the new guard of Chicago architects shaping the Loop in the 21st century, Jackie Koo and her firm, Koo and Associates, brought a bolt of energy to the North Loop in 2009 with the Wit Hotel at 201 North State Street.

Challenging the notion that a hotel should act as a respite from the urban environment, Koo chose instead to embrace the bustling theater district and “L” train activity around it with vast expanses of glass.

With another new hotel project on the books in the South Loop (at Balbo Drive and South Wabash Avenue), Koo and Associates is a firm to watch.