INTERVIEW: The Houses that John Built (2010)

John Elliott. (Source: The National)

Initially invited by ARABICON to contribute in the city planning of Abu Dhabi, John Elliott arrived in Abu Dhabi in 1967 and was the architect behind the ARABICON Plan.  Having worked on town planning in Sweden in previous years, he found that his Scandinavian values aligned strikingly with the socialistic ideals of Islamic faith.  He was closely associated with Sheikh Zayed, with whom he shared similar visions on urban planning.  He was offered the position of the town planner of Abu Dhabi in 1967, which he declined, preferring to work on the design of the “national house” and the Central Market.

Before his death in 2010, he was interviewed by Ann Wimsatt, fellow architect.  In this interview, he remarked on the values shared between himself and Zayed.  He explained how these ideals were developed into plans and how they might align with the city we see today.



Wimsatt, Ann. “The houses that John built.” The National, November 27, 2010.


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