Mercy Lakefront Housing: Schiff Residence


Chicago, IL


Murphy Jahn Architects

Project Owner:

Mercy Housing Lakefront

Time Period:


The Margot and Harold Schiff Residences are located in the City of Chicago in an area once dominated by the Cabrini-Green public housing projects. The building was part of a larger city plan to create multiple mixed-income communities with newly constructed affordable rental units, single family homes, and commercial space. Designed by JAHN (formerly Murphy/Jahn Architects), the Schiff Residences generates a portion of its own power with wind turbines and photovoltaics, and recycles rainwater from the roof in cisterns.

Working with JAHN, TGDA provided a sustainable planting design, which engages residents and provides ecological benefits. The design, referred to as the “Schiff Prairie” is a blend of native and hardy non-natives and drifts of grasses and forbs that maintain their health and vibrancy even in the depths of winter.

The landscape was developed to meet LEED requirements by incorporating resilient trees, shrubs, and perennials to create a garden setting with conservative maintenance and watering requirements. In addition, the use of many adaptive, drought-tolerant plant species reduces the need for irrigation and helps mitigate stormwater run-off.

714 South Dearborn Street, Floor 5
Chicago, IL 60605
312 337 9145
© Terry Guen Design Associates