Chicago tourism

Governor’s office moves from Thompson Center

CHICAGO — The governor’s office moved from the James R. Thompson Center on Friday, as many staffers emptying the 16th floor say they’re happy to move on.

Since 1985, the postmodern Thompson Center has stood above Clark Street like a giant greenhouse. Inside, even tourists say what state employees have been saying for decades: The building needs a major update.

“We were just talking about kind of creepy inside actually,” said Boston tourist Korina Martin.

To the governor’s chief of staff, it looks like a building lost in time.

“If you could imagine your grandparents’ playroom like circa 1975, where nothing has been changed or updated. It’s too hot in summer, it’s too cold in winter,” said Anne Caprara.

The 16th floor isn’t without its quirks, finding signs from every governor’s administration to call the Thompson Center home.

Staff members paid tribute to the odd and embarrassing floor, including bins to catch water from the ceiling, doors without handles and a warning not to use the toaster and microwave at the same time , as a fuse might have blown.

The new office at 555 West Monroe Street has work lights, which is cause for celebration.

The Thompson Center is sold to a local developer who plans to invest $280 million in a renovation. Every year it costs about $17 million to keep the lights on.