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Revealed: Herzog & de Meuron's proposed new Oxford faculty

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Swiss practice Herzog & de Meuron has released the first image of its proposed new Blavatnik School of Government in Oxford

The £30 million scheme will be built on Walton Street next to St Paul’s church inside the University’s Rafael Vinoly-masterplanned Radcliffe Observatory Quarter site.

Sponsored by American industrialist and philanthropist Leonard Blavatnik, the ‘stacked’ semi-circular scheme is expected to be submitted for planning in October (2012).

The project, billed as the first major school of government building in Europe, is expected to complete in mid-2015.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail, Paul Goffin, Oxford University’s director of Estates, said: ‘The building pays tribute to features of Oxford’s skyline – its circular shape evokes the Radcliffe Camera and the design is squared off on one side like Christopher Wren’s distinctive Sheldonian Theatre.’

Previous story (AJ 06.10.11)

Herzog & de Meuron appointed to design new Oxford faculty

Herzog & de Meuron have been appointed to design a £30 million school of government for Oxford University

The Swiss starchitects behind the Tate Modern conversion of Bankside Power Station are expected to complete the project by 2015.

Herzog & de Meuron’s ‘iconic new building’ – called the Blavatnik School of Government – will create an environment where the school can ‘develop future world leaders’, according to the University. Images of the scheme have yet to be revealed.

Sponsored by American industrialist and philanthropist Leonard Blavatnik, the scheme will be built on Walton Street next to St Paul’s church inside the University’s Rafael Vinoly-masterplanned Radcliffe Observatory Quarter site.

Niall McLaughlin’s nearby student accommodation project for Somerville College completed last month.

University chancellor Chris Patten said: ‘The appointment of Herzog & de Meuron as architects is one of a number of developments that reflect the bold global ambition of Oxford’s new Blavatnik School of Government.

‘The selection of Professor Ngaire Woods as Dean is another. I have worked closely with Ngaire for a number of years on global economic governance issues and she is exactly the right person to lead this visionary school.’

Blavatnik added: ‘Exceptionally solid groundwork has been laid to ensure the successful opening of the Blavatnik School of Government next year.

‘The quality of leaders and teachers that the School has attracted is a testament to Oxford University’s unparalleled reputation and to the need for a European-based institution devoted to the enhancement of democratic government throughout the world. I look forward to the first cohort of students beginning their studies and to their future contributions to our global society.’

In August Hawkins\Brown won planning permission for a £7.5 million health centre project also on Walton Street and within the university’s Radcliffe Observatory Quarter expansion masterplan.

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