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Keppie to draw up plans for New Cairo

KEPPIE Design, the Glasgow-based architectural practice, has won the right to create a new masterplan for New Cairo, one of several satellites being developed to ease population density in the Egyptian capital.

The contract restores momentum to a project hindered by political uncertainty in recent years.

Keppie, which has historic links to Charles Rennie Mackintosh, has designed a mixed-used development for OUIA Real Estate Investment Company, a participant in the Libyan Foreign Investment Company. It will work on the project with local practice THE, which will focus on its delivery, client liaison and compliance with local regulations.

The successful tender stemmed from local links built by Keppie further to its involvement in two hospital projects and a university campus in Egypt.

Asked whether he was concerned further political uncertainty could jeopardise the project, Keppie's David Ross emphasised the importance of working with a local partner to help mitigate risk.

He said the firm had become "more selective" about its commitments since the global recession.

Keppie is working on projects in Malaysia and Singpore, and aims to build a presence in Turkey.

Mr Ross said: "We are naturally very pleased to be working on such a major project. We were able to demonstrate an understanding of cultural and social issues in Egypt through the selection process and we have been working closely with our Libyan client and our local Egyptian partners THE, to deliver a responsive and viable design solution."

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