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Amid the urban chaos of modern-day Beirut rise a few controversial projects that defy convention. For better or for worse, depending on which version of Beirut's heritage you prefer, renowned Lebanese architect Bernard Khoury is creating his own interpretation of a complex city's disputed history.Remaining largely faithful to the colonial spirit, projects dating from the '90s to the present day have imported foreign architectural trends, Khoury believes, without reconciling them to local need.Without a comprehensive plan, Khoury believes Beirut was just in perpetual development, never achieving a clear vision."It was the largest real estate development in the world at the time," Khoury said, "[but] we missed a lot of opportunities to create meaning," he added, stressing that a lot of imported "recipes" were brought in with the project.With his own projects, Khoury has no common formula. Nobody can escape the fact that Beirut is an overcrowded city, but Khoury said he did not mind the density.
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