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Abuja High Commission office under way at last

The troubled project to design a new British High Commission office in the Nigerian capital of Abuja is back on track - just months after the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) was told there was no cash to fund the scheme.

According to a source within the FCO, architect RTKL has now been appointed to take the development forward after finances were finally freed up by central government (FCO scheme in Abuja put on hold ).

The practice was chosen ahead of shortlisted firms Allies and Morrison, Jordan and Bateman, The Manser Practice and John McAslan & Partners, to land the prestigious £25 million project.

RTKL will now be asked to design a 5,000m2 complex for the FCO which will include an administrative block, 10 new staff houses and 'associated security works'.

The high commission, the duties of which include providing a consular service to British citizens and helping out with visas and passports, hopes to move into the new building by 2011.

Quantity surveyor Ridge has also been appointed to work on the project.

by Richard Waite

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