Apple’s new Michigan Avenue store on Chicago’s riverfront, which is intended to be a “town square” in the community, opens up on Friday.

Besides the store’s stunning look, the location will be a gathering place for residents. Apple’s Chicago store will hold year-round “Today at Apple” programming. Those workshops include information from app developers, programmers and teachers, and are led by Apple’s creative team.

Apple opens up Michigan Avenue store in Chicago. Apple opens up Michigan Avenue store in Chicago. Photo: Apple

“When Apple opened on North Michigan Avenue in 2003, it was our first flagship store, and now we are back in Chicago opening the first in a new generation of Apple’s most significant worldwide retail locations,” said Apple’s Senior Vice President of Retail Angela in a statement. “Apple Michigan Avenue exemplifies our new vision where everyone is welcome to experience all of our incredible products, services and inspiring educational programs in the heart of their city.”

The Chicago riverfront store connects North Michigan Avenue, Pioneer Court and the Chicago River through granite staircases, as seen below.

The number of employees at the Michigan Avenue store increased from 58 to 250. The store is supported by four interior pillars that hold up the 32-foot glass facades, while the roof of the store resembles the top of a MacBook.

The opening comes after Apple announced at its September event it was designing stores with a town square vibe so members of communities can listen to local music, sit, relax and take part in Apple workshops. Apple’s Fifth Avenue store in New York City is currently being redesigned as a town square and will open next year. The Paris store near the Champs Elysee will also turn into a community gathering place, Ahrendts‏ said last month.

Apple opens up Michigan Avenue store Apple opens up Michigan Avenue store in Chicago. Photo: Apple

How To Sign Up For Chicago Apple Store Events

The new store will host “The Chicago Series,” a month-long set of events to celebrate the opening. The event will based on different topics, like photography, music, app development and coding. Members of the community can sign up for the free Chicago Series events at Apple said the store will launch the series on Monday with a set of five programs that will be hosted throughout a month.

Apple will offer the following programs:

  • Accelerate Your Startup Idea with 1871 inspires participants to develop a startup business concept that will positively impact the City of Chicago and provides them solutions to turn their idea into a business. The selected finalist will receive ongoing support from 1871, a non-profit digital startup incubator, and Apple.

  • Participants in Create Collaborative Art will contribute to the creation of a new piece of work with local artist Theaster Gates and the Black Monks of Mississippi, a Chicago-based performance art ensemble.

  • Prototype a Civic App with BLUE 1647 encourages everyone to learn how to conceive and design an app concept that serves community needs, rewarding the top app developer with ongoing mentorship from BLUE 1647, a local tech innovation center, and Apple.

  • Photograph Chicago with VSCO teaches aspiring and established photographers how to capture the subtleties of neighborhoods and the people who live there. The best work will be featured at a future Today at Apple program in Chicago and on VSCO’s social media channels.

  • Cultivate Your Voice with Young Chicago Authors leads participants on a journey of telling stories and defining their voice through poetry, graffiti and rap. Following this program, “The Chicago Series” will wrap with a slam poetry open mic night with Kevin Coval, a leading voice in Chicago’s music community.