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Spanish touch


Off to the RIBA, where Spanish firm Idom is holding a splendid evening of discussion, wine and tapas with lots of London-based Spaniards, including the wonderfully named Coco Cugat.

Idom has been open in London for more than a year now, and has just achieved its first big competition win - an urban regeneration masterplan for the North Quays of Waterford (found by the Vikings, and where the crystal comes from).The 70,000 square metre proposals include a multi-functional venue building among other facilities, which were presented first by Angela Rolfe, senior architect at the Irish Office of Public Works, then by Idom's London director Fernando Perez, who was executive architect on Frank Gehry's Bilbao Guggenheim before moving to London. Rolfe was able to announce that funding has just been secured for the project; her brief history of the OPW included the extraordinary statistic that in the 1840s, as part of government efforts to alleviate poverty, it employed no less than 400,000 people on a variety of infrastructure, naval and military buildings.These days it is into conservation and regeneration.

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