The new McDonald’s Global Headquarters helped to shepherd the West Loop and Fulton Market towards a full state of maturity as an office district extension of the downtown Loop. Symbolically speaking, the fast food giant’s relocation to the area was just as significant, representing an accelerating suburb-to-city migration of corporate headquarters. In fact, the company was originally based in Chicago, from 1955 to 1971.
The building contains flexible open-plan office space for 2,000 employees, a “Hamburger University” staff and executive training facility, a sixth floor Work Cafe referencing the colorful tubes and tunnels of a McDonald’s PlayPlace, and a street-level restaurant with a sampling of global menu items, along with several outdoor terraces and a green roof. Throughout the building are museum-quality displays of Happy Meal toys and vintage memorabilia. The environmental branding of the interiors, accomplished through heavy use of wood and greenery in the common spaces, seems aimed at associating the company with sustainability.
As you explore Chicago during OHC, please wear a face covering, maintain at least six feet of distance from others and do not attempt to enter any buildings.