• Sunshade fan pano rossiter-digital
  • Trp07749
  • Interior w skylight rossiter-web
  • Trp08013-hdr-pano-sm
  • Courtyard rossiter-web
  • Willow creek north shore 08-web
  • Cafe rossiter-web
  • Dsc 5977
  • Dsc 6021
  • Dsc 6032


Willow Creek North Shore

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Willow Creek North Shore features a large state-of-the-art auditorium, a smaller “black box” auditorium, admin offices, youth and adult education spaces, a café, and a large sky-lit preassembly area surrounding the main sanctuary. The building was designed to look more like a community center than a typical church because it was important to the client to engage the surrounding community.

The main space is a 1200-seat auditorium that serves church functions and acts as a multifunctional community space for Glenview. Since it’s opening in December 2016, the space has hosted numerous cultural events. The smaller Impact Auditorium was designed for youth culture and is also used by both the church and the community.

It was critical to the client that the building establish a welcoming feeling and clear diagram that was understandable for the first-time visitor and regular attendees. The corridors gently curve allowing visitors to flow through the space while enjoying views of the outside. Two landscaped, elliptical-shaped courtyards bring natural light into the auditorium and the corridors that access classroom and office facilities.

The use of natural light was imperative to the design’s success. Floor-to-ceiling windows face outward to the campus and inward to the intimate courtyards, providing views and daylighting to the interior spaces. Because the building faces directly south a 15’ deep aluminum sunshade was used to protect the front of the building façade from heat gain, while still allowing for natural light.

The interior design of the building is elegant and minimal, with the exposed structure throughout the public spaces that increases the ceiling height, gives a feeling of openness, and is a symbol of sustainability by leaving out any unnecessary materials.  A long skylight in the center of the pre-function is designed so that the sun will shine into the space and wash the outside wall of the auditorium with light as people enter before the worship services.  The light will bounce differently based upon the time of day, allowing yet another connection to nature for building occupants.

Willow Creek North Shore is currently under review for LEED Certification and meets the energy target of 20% savings versus the ASHRAE baseline on similar buildings.

28 nov 16 | Chicago Tribune
World renowned architect designs North Shore church
Smith's latest labor of love is a one-story building on a tight budget... MORE

nov 16 | Civil Engineering 
Church Building Design Features Sweeping Curves and Connection to Nature
New church with an elliptical form offers views of the tree-lined courtyards and other vegetated spaces surrounding the building... MORE

9 may 16 | Architect's Newspaper
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture design 72,000-square-foot Church in Glenview, Illinois
Chicago-based Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture may be best known for its supertalls, but even though one of the offce’s current constructions, Willow Creek North Shore Church, is quite the opposite, it will still have its congregation looking up... MORE

24 mar 16 | Building Design + Construction
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture incorporates Biblical parable into church design
The mustard seed is such an appropriate parable that it was told three times in the Bible. As the story goes, the small, oblong seed grew into a large tree that attracted and housed a plethora of birds... MORE

22 mar 16 | AS+GG Press Release
New Willow Creek North Shore Designed by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture is Now Under Construction in Glenview, Illinois
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG) has designed the new Willow Creek North Shore, now under construction at the Glen, in Glenview, Illinois... MORE

Willow Creek North Shore

Structural Engineer
Forefront Structural Engineers

Civil Engineer
Haeger Engineering

MEP Engineer
Sun Mechanical Systems


Fire Protection
Fire Control Inc.

The Brickman Group

Glenn H. Johnson


The Chicago Athenaeum, American Architecture Awards, Willow Creek North Shore