Star architects rally against Brexit as UK's EU referendum begins
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Star architects rally against Brexit as UK's EU referendum begins

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A host of architects and designers from the UK and around the world have rallied behind the campaign to keep Britain in the EUropean Union ahead of a landmark referendum today (23 June) which will decide the country’s future in the politico-economic union.

David Chipperfield, Rem Koolhaas, Richard Rogers, David Adjaye, Ron Arad and Thomas Heatherwick are among the individuals who have openly called for voters heading to the polls to vote to stay.

In a statement, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners said “Britain has always been at its best when we have engaged with our neighbours, embracing the exchange of people, ideas and influences. The quality of life in Britain, particularly its architecture and its cities, has greatly benefited from the personal, professional and cultural relationships we have with the rest of Europe. This interaction has made us more civilized.

“More than 40% of the staff at Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners are non-British EU citizens. These individuals stimulate and enrich our practice through the diversity of perspectives they bring to our work, their extraordinary talent and dynamism. A significant proportion of the practice’s work is currently situated within the EU and many of our greatest projects have been built in Europe.

“As a practice we think that leaving the European Union would represent a catastrophic error of judgement in its impact on our economy, not least within the construction sector. Importantly, it would also leave us culturally, socially and environmentally impoverished. We are convinced that we are better and stronger together than apart.”

In his own statement, David Chipperfield said “Britain is not just stronger in the EU, it is more imaginative and creative. Our global creative success would be severely weakened by walking away.” He asked, “Are we outward-looking and open to working with others to achieve more? Or do we close ourselves off from our friends and neighbours at a time of increasing global uncertainty?”

Meanwhile, in an open letter sent to The Telegraph earlier this month, Adjaye, Heatherwick and Arad argued that, “Leaving the EU would be a leap into the unknown for millions of people in the UK who work in the creative industries, and for the millions more at home and abroad who benefit from the vibrancy of Britain’s cultural sector.”

In an interview with the BBC Koolhaas also voiced his support for Remain, arguing, "It’s the nations and prime ministers that take the decisions, but because of this myth of Brussels, they are also able to blame Brussels for the decisions they took themselves.”

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A host of architects and designers from the UK and around the world have rallied behind the campaign to keep Britain in the European Union ahead of a landmark referendum today (23 June) which will decide the country’s future in the politico-economic union.
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