Stride Treglown to bring hospitals, universities

UK firm Stride Treglown establishes an office in Abu Dhabi

In an effort to expand its global presence and offer Middle East clients state-of-the-art education and healthcare facilities, multidisciplinary UK firm Stride Treglown, established an office in Abu Dhabi in early October.

In the UK, the London-based firm is recognised for its portfolio of public sector buildings, its reputation for safety and its burgeoning design excellence—all attributes it hopes to transfer to a Middle Eastern context.

Utilising its 270-person design team in the UK as well as its documentation specialists in Vietnam, Stride Treglown aims to add “five or six” architecture practitioners on the ground in its Abu Dhabi branch office.

Led by UK-based director Richard Philipson and UAE general manager, Nathan Hones, Stride Treglown is focusing on building connections in the UAE and forming joint venture arrangements throughout the region.

While the Stride Treglown announcement for expansion was unexpected—given that the firm has never held an office outside the UK—Philipson was quick to point out that the move was strategic.

“We reviewed a number of global locations for our first step into the international market, and after a couple of adventures in the Caribbean and Europe, we determined that the UAE provided the greatest opportunity for us,” explained Philipson.

“The inspirational vision of the Plan Abu Dhabi 2030…presented to us the kind of market in which Stride Treglown likes to do business,” he added.

Industry response to adding one of the UK’s most reputable firms to Abu Dhabi’s growing pool of architectural talent has been positive and appointing Hones, an architectural veteran of the Middle East, to manage the office was a crucial step for Philipson.

“We’ve had a really positive response from other consultants and potential clients,” said Philipson. “Nathan’s knowledge of the region and experience is proving invaluable…. We also just liked the look and feel of Abu Dhabi today – it has heart and soul.”

Despite the timeliness of its expansion, Stride Treglown isn’t just another international firm looking to capitalise on Abu Dhabi’s veritable gold rush of development.

The firm’s regional focus will be on designing and building facilities for education and healthcare—something sorely lacking in Abu Dhabi’s largely commercial/retail skyline.

“We are focusing on our strengths in education from early years through universities to lifelong learning and healthcare,” said Philipson.

“Our capabilities in master planning, commercial, office and hotel design will also be available,” he added.

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