British architect wins exclusive US commission on back of UK 'Idea Stores'

David Adjaye has won a competition to design two libraries in the heart of Washington DC.

His practice was chosen ahead of 17 rivals to design modern replacements for the Washington Highlands library and Francis A Gregory library in the US capital. Each library will have a budget of approximately $9.5m (£5.3m)

David Adjaye
Adjaye's Idea Store concept impressed

According to the Washington Post, it was Adjaye's Idea Store libraries in east London that helped swing the commission for him.

Ginnie Cooper, chief librarian of DC Public Libraries, said: “In the library world, we paid attention to [the Idea Stores]. They are in what I would describe as rough neighbourhoods.”

Adjaye's Idea Store in Whitechapel was nominated for the Stirling Prize in 2006. His first major US commission, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, opened earlier this year, and Adjaye Associates' office there is working on projects in New York, New Orleans and Texas.