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British firms make the cut in St Petersburg shortlist

A brace of British-based firms has been shortlisted alongside some of the world's biggest architects in a competition for a massive office scheme in Russia.

The organisers behind the Gazprom City project, in St Petersburg, have named the Richard Rogers Partnership and RMJM among the seven superstar finalists battling it out to land the prize scheme.

Russian oil giant Gazprom has also picked French icon Jean Nouvel, Swiss hotshots Herzog & de Meuron, Daniel Libeskind, Rem Koolhaas' OMA and Massimiliano Fuksas.

The firms were selected from more than 40 initial bids and the eventual winner will get their hands on designing a 300,000m 2commercial complex, including a 300m-tall office tower, next to the city's famous Bolsheokhtinsky Bridge.

The US$600 million (£324 million) scheme will become the home to a number of multinational companies, as well as being Gazprom's own main office building.

Peter Wislocki, Director of European Operations at RMJM, said: 'RMJM's invitation to enter this prestigious competition recognises the quality of our current work in Russia and around the world.

'This project provides an opportunity to develop our unique contextual approach recognising the distinctive qualities of St Petersburg and the significance of Gazprom as one of Russia's most important companies.'

'We see this project as an opportunity to develop a distinctive and meaningful design approach in the context of a unique yet familiar city.'

by Richard Waite

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