Moshe Safdie

From Academic Kids

Moshe Safdie (born July 14, 1938) is a famous architect and urban designer. He was born in the town of Haifa in the British Mandate of Palestine. His family left for Montreal, Canada when he was a teenager. As a dedicated socialist and Zionist he disliked this move.

An excellent student he studied architectural engineering at McGill University and apprenticed under Louis Kahn in Philadelphia. At age twenty-four his master's thesis was selected to be constructed as part of the Expo '67 celebration. The Habitat 67 project, a complex of cellular residences that could be lifted into place like LEGO blocks, made him known around the world. In 1967 he returned to Israel where he was part of the team that refurbished Old Jerusalem. He lives in a renovated home in the old city. He has dual Israeli-Canadian citizenship.

In 1976 he became a professor at Harvard University and set up his firm's head office in nearby Somerville, Massachusetts, where it remains today. The company also has offices in Toronto and Jerusalem. In 1986 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada and was promoted to Companion in 2005.

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