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New practices: Blee Halligan Architects

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The latest in a series of practice profiles looking at architects who have recently decided to go it alone either through choice or redundancy

Blee Halligan Architects, Shoreditch, east London

Founded: February 2014

Main people: Greg Blee

Where have you come from?
I was an architect in Niall McLaughlin’s office. I’m also Basil Spence’s grandson.

What kind of projects are you looking for?
I want to work on projects that balance commercial return with a civic contribution and a public realm that is laid out for productive use. In my eyes, these are the components that makes schemes work really well.

What are your ambitions?
I’m very ambitious. I don’t see any reason why a small, young practice can’t attract well-known clients – it’s about selling to them our understanding of the commercial reality of a project and injecting it with well-researched, creative solutions.

What are the biggest challenges you face as a start-up practice?
Thinking there is a glass ceiling. If you think deeply about what a client needs and develop innovative ideas that focus on cost effective solutions that are fun, robust and efficient you’ll attract their attention.

Which recent scheme has inspired you?
I love Olson Kundig’s work, such as Art Stable in Seattle – the perfect blend of commercial viability and innovation. The facade is incredible.

How are you marketing yourselves?

The temptation is to go for overkill on websites and brochures. I’m more interested in meeting people socially.


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