Vlastimil Jezek, the director of the Czech National Library was dismissed by the country’s ministry of culture amid a firestorm of ongoing arguments over the validity of the international contest and ‘unresolved’ site issues.
According to the Prague Daily Monitor, the ministry had become exasperated that the project would not start ‘at the time and at the place declared’ and feared the competition had been ‘launched at variance with law’.
The move comes despite Jezek’s insistence in recent weeks that a deal to secure a suitable plot for the building, dubbed ‘The Blob’ was imminent.
Since winning the competition ahead of Brits Carmody Groarke in March 2007 the project has been mired in controversy and delays.
Earlier this year Future System’s founder Jan Kaplicky threatened to walk away from the scheme and claimed he would sue Prague officials after they put off a decision on the sea creature-shaped design (AJ04/03/08).
Kaplicky was unavailable for comment.