New U.S. Embassy Will Be Futuristic Fortress

London structure could take four years to build

By Matthew Stawarz
|  Wednesday, Feb 24, 2010  |  Updated 8:45 AM EDT
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New U.S. Embassy Will Be Futuristic Fortress

New U.S. embassy in London will have some impressive features, including a moat.

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It will make D.C.'s Embassy Row look more like a frat row. 

The U.S. has unveiled plans to build a brand new embassy in London -- and no expense is being spared.

You may be under the impression that spending is tight. Think again. The new embassy’s price tag is expected to be $1 billion. 
 
According to the Washington Post, Philadelphia-based architecture firm KieranTimberlake has been tabbed to build it.  The plan calls for an energy-efficient "cube" that is also secure. It will be built using blast-resistant glass, and will be surrounded by a 100-foot-wide moat. 
 
Yes, a moat.
 
Adam Namm, acting director of the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations, told the Associated Press the building would cost about $1 billion. He said it is "in the ballpark of the most expensive embassies we have built."
 
The U.S. is selling its longtime diplomatic home in London’s Mayfair district. This new embassy will be built further south.
 
Construction is expected to start in 2013 and could take four years.

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