Team Effort at Practice Facility

April 1, 2017

The Advocate Center, the new practice home to the Chicago Bulls, needed a resilient envelope due to Chicago’s seasonal weather changes. The metal panels chosen feature high-performance thermal efficiency and moisture control.

Chicago, Ill.
HOK & NORR Illinois Inc.

After holding practices in Deerfield, Ill. since 1992, the Chicago Bulls moved into their new Advocate Center practice facility in downtown Chicago in early 2015. Situated directly next door to the United Center—where the Bulls play their home games—the new practice facility eliminated what had previously been a half-hour commute for the players, coaches and team staff . Features such as two full-length basketball courts, media and weight rooms, a miniature barbershop, a hydrotherapy area, a kitchen-dining area and more, make the Advocate Center a first-class facility.

INFLUENCE:The building also required a resilient building envelope due to Chicago’s seasonal weather changes. Exterior metal panels were chosen to provide weather resistance, an essential factor in a place that lives up to its name as the “Windy City.” SOLUTION:

Considered by some league officials as a “basketball palace,” HOK, turned to CENTRIA to help build a new state-of-the-art facility. CENTRIA’s Formawall Dimension Series insulated metal panel systems were selected for the construction of the Advocate Center to help create the contemporary façade. Not only do the Dimension Series metal panels lend themselves to a smooth aesthetic, but also present high-performance thermal efficiency and moisture control features. The lightweight panels allow for easy installation, oftentimes requiring less framing. Providing maximum thermal performance and moisture control, the Formawall Dimension Series panels include a factory foam-insulated core, minimizing insulation gaps, along with a thermal break between the face and the liner. Utilizing pressure equalization along the length of the horizontal joinery, the horizontal panels provide weather resistance. CENTRIA’s Concept Series Concealed Fastener Panels were implemented on the north side of the building, a façade that features opaque glass at eye level and becomes increasingly transparent at high levels to allow fans outside of the downtown facility to see the franchise’s six championship banners in the rafters.


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