Norman Foster Cancels Plan to Move Foundation to Madrid

Norman Foster's Swiss Re Building, London.

The Norman Foster Foundation has abandoned its plan to relocate from London to Madrid, reports the Art Newspaper. The foundation, run by the British architect of the same name, had hoped to move its headquarters and Foster’s personal archives to a historic mansion in the Spanish city.

Although a spokesperson for the foundation told TAN that the reasons for the decision were private, Foster’s hand may have been forced. Madrid’s historic preservation commission rejected changes to a previously approved proposal for the project. Foster had planned to convert a 1902 mansion in the city into a private contemporary architecture and design museum. Designed by Joaquin Saldaña for the Duke of Plasencia, the building was purchased by Foster last year from a Spanish bank for €9 million ($12.4 million).

Perhaps best known for designing, colloquially known as the Gherkin for its unusual, pickle-like shape, Foster received the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1999.

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