CHICAGO – (AP) – Helmut Jahn, a prominent German architect who designed an Illinois state government building and helped design the FBI headquarters in Washington, was killed when two vehicles collided with a bicycle he was riding outside of Chicago .
81-year-old Jahn was met on Saturday afternoon while driving north on a village street in Campton Hills, about 90 kilometers west of Chicago. Jahn didn’t stop at a stop sign at an intersection and was hit by the two vehicles traveling in opposite directions, Campton Hills Police Chief Steven Miller said in a press release.
Jahn was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. According to the authorities, the driver of one of the vehicles that Jahn hit was taken to a hospital for treatment for non-life-threatening injuries.
According to a profile on the website of his company Jahn, he was born in Germany in 1940 and graduated from the Technical University in Munich. In 1966 he moved to Chicago to study with the legendary architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, a creator of modernist architecture, at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Jahn’s professional career began in 1967 when he moved to CF Murphy Associates, later Murphy / Jahn. He has worked on several major projects, including Chicago’s McCormick Place and the United Airlines terminal at O’Hare International Airport, which includes a walkway famous for its colorful lighting. He was also involved in the design of the J Edgar Hoover Building, the FBI headquarters in Washington, DC
Jahn’s international work includes the Sony Center in Berlin and Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok, Thailand.
“Helmut had an exceptional career for both its length and the consistent quality of the work,” Reed Kroloff, dean of the Illinois Institute of Technology’s College of Architecture, told the Chicago Tribune Sunday. “In his heyday he was one of the most influential architects in the world. Not only formally, but also technically. He became involved with very advanced building skin technologies from an early age. He created buildings of all kinds. “
One of its most controversial buildings was the James R. Thompson Building, a glass-clad government building for the Illinois government in Chicago’s Loop that opened in 1985. It was put up for sale last week. State officials say the 17-story building is a drag on government finances because it is inefficient to operate and costs hundreds of millions of dollars in repairs.
Jahn has taught at the University of Illinois Chicago, Harvard University, Yale University, and the Illinois Institute of Technology.
This story has been corrected to reflect that Campton Hills is west of Chicago.
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