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Internationally-acclaimed architect to redesign Nicosia's Eleftheria Square
2005-05-26 14:11:44

May 26 -- Internationally-acclaimed Iraqi-born architect, Zaha Hadid, has won the Paneuropean architectural competition for the redesigning of Nicosia’s Eleftheria Square.

Nicosia is Cyprus’ capital, Europe's only divided one since Turkey's invasion in 1974. Two of Hadid's associates, Greek Cypriot architect Christos Passas and Turkish Cypriot Saffer Bekiroglu probably had something to do with such a big firm showing an interest in a small job like Eleftheria Square. And while not denying this, Bekiroglu said it was really Zaha Hadid’s call that saw an experimental challenge in the Cyprus project.

He also told The Cyprus Weekly that the important thing was for the work on the square not to take anything away from the dominating presence of the Venetian Walls.

The project treats the wall as a circular unifying element for the whole town, with a properly-designed garden offering facilities for various activities.

The square itself will gain an additional width of 15-20m to its southern edge over the moat, with traffic flowing more or less in the same way as it does today.

Zaha, 54, who lives and works in the US and London, has won many international awards including recently the 2004 Laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, the first woman to do so since it was established 26 years ago.

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