“I wanted to be an architect when I was a kid”: Obama reveals presidential library design

Images of the planned presidential library which will house the legacy of Barack Obama have been revealed.

The project’s designers, Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects | Partners and Interactive Design Architects, proposed a three-building campus with a lantern-shaped structure—etched with Obama’s 2008 campaign logo—in the centre serving as a museum.

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Two single-story structures will house a community centre and possibly a branch of the Chicago Public Library.

“I wanted to be an architect when I was kid,” said Obama as he unveiled the architects’ renderings for his permanent archive.

A crowd of 300 politicians and community leaders gathered at Chicago’s South Shore Cultural Center to get a first look at the plans for former US president Barack Obama’s presidential library.

After leaving office, Obama expressed his desire to create a “presidential centre for citizenship” as a training ground for the next generation of civic and political leaders.

“What we want this to be is the world’s premier institution for training young people and leadership to make a difference in their communities, in their countries and in the world,” explained Obama, describing his library as being like a tuition-free leadership school.

Former first lady Michelle Obama asked the public to send in ideas for the design of the project in January.

“This will be your Presidential Centre just as much as ours,” she said.

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