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Walbrook Square: Foster and Nouvel feel the force of the recession

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The Walbrook Square project in central London designed by Norman Foster and Jean Nouvel - nicknamed ‘Darth Vader’s helmet’ - is set to be scrapped after the Spanish property company Metrovacesa left the project

The designs by the two architects have already suffered from significant delays following legal disputes between Metrovacesa and freeholder Legal & General.

But now the project looks set to be cancelled altogether after the Spanish property firm pulled out of the £300 million scheme, which has cost it a £100 million penalty, according to media reports.

The Walbrook Square scheme by the Pritzker prize winners planned to create a set of 22-storey tower blocks, already nicknamed ‘Darth Vader’s Helmet’ due to their imposing design.

But it is thought Metrovacesa’s departure will end Foster and Nouvel’s proposals, which saw Bovis Lend Lease pull its team in October 2008.

Since then, the future of the Walbrook Square project has been unclear, with rumours circulating that the global architect Gensler could be brought on to see the scheme through.


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