By Steven Vance and Heather Morrison

Asif Rahman, a former Deputy Commissioner at the Chicago Department of Buildings, is being honored with a lifetime achievement award next month. Friends of Downtown is hosting the Best of Downtown Awards on Wednesday, October 9, at the Cliff Dwellers Club. (The view from the Cliff Dwellers Club over Grant Park is depicted above.) 

The awards celebrate "architecture, planning, policy, business and people that have had a significant impact on the livability and beauty of downtown Chicago at our annual fundraiser and awards banquet."

Thank you to Adam Lund at SCB for making this happen and recognizing someone who is one of the best public servants the Chicago architectural community has ever seen. 

Rahman retired from the Department of Buildings in April. He was very effective at bridging the gap between Chicago's archaic building code and modern design and construction methods. The updated Chicago building code adopted the International Building Code's latest edition, 2018, and promises to lessen the need for interpretations and variances that many architects and contractors rely on now. 

Left: Deputy Commissioner Asif Rahman; top: Commissioner Judy Frydland; bottom: Deputy Commissioner Grant Ullrich

Left: Deputy Commissioner Asif Rahman; top: Commissioner Judy Frydland; bottom: Deputy Commissioner Grant Ullrich

Rahman created solutions for the complex design problems and expedited the compliance process. His legacy of his 30 year career is right before us in the skyscrapers, mid-rises, single family homes he helped us "figure out". 

Asif Rahman is a mentor and friend to many of us and it’s very fitting that he will be celebrated formally at this event as we will celebrate him forever.