Late last year, Egypt’s Ministry of Culture sponsoed an international design competition to reconceptualise the Cairo’s Ramses Square. Once a central public space in the ultra-frenetic city, Ramses Square, built in the mid-1800’s, functions today as a point of intersection between different modes of transportation in the city. Elevated roads that snake through the square date back to the 1970’s. With 280,000 pedestrians and 2 million vehicles passing through it every eight hours, the square is rumored to be one of the most polluted spots in all of Egypt. The competition was open to architects, planners and urban designers, to propose the best solution for the square’s “traffic problems, confusion of uses and all types of pollution (audio, visual and environmental).”
Quilligan Architects of Dublin have been announced in second place. This follows on from their successful showing in last year’s competition to reinvent Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, New York.
The international jury of the Ramses Square competition composed: Abdallah A. Attia, architect, Egypt, Abdel Mohsen Barada, Egypt, Sameh El-Alaily, architect, Egypt, Alexandru Beldiman, architect, Romania, representing UIA, Diana Agrest, architect, USA, Eliseo Arredondo, architect, Mexico, Axel Schultes, architect, Germany. Claire Bailly, architect, France, will participate as deputy UIArepresentative.