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Foster in search of education gold

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Foster and Partners has launched a concerted campaign to take advantage of the government-led boom in education buildings.

Norman Foster told the AJ that his office currently has two City Academy projects at the design stage in addition to the newly completed Bexley Business Academy and the Brent Academy, which is approaching completion.

Foster also refused to rule out the practice taking on the batches of PFI schools currently being distributed by local authorities.

'We would consider any projects on their merits, ' he said at the launch of the Bexley scheme. 'It is dangerous to have preconceptions about the best schemes. As long as the client has the right principles we would look at them.

'The government is doing a great job at the moment ensuring money goes into the education infrastructure, ' he added.

But Foster's director Grant Brooker insisted that the newfound enthusiasm for school jobs was not a response to the downturn in the speculative office market. 'There is no hidden agenda, ' he said. 'We can't manipulate our workload any more than any other practice.'

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