Leon Krier is an architect, architectural theorist and urban planner. He is more renowned for his advisory work and publications than having realised projects.
From the late 1970s onwards Krier has been an influential neo-traditional architect and planner. His best known work is for the on going development of Poundbury, an urban extension to Dorchester, UK for the Duchy of Cornwall under the guidance of Prince of Wales. Additionally his Masterplan for Cayalá, an extension of Guatemala City, is also well-known and documented.
In 1968 Krier abandoned his architectural studies at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, after only one year, to work in the office of architect James Stirling in London, UK. After working for Stirling for three years, Krier then spent 20 years in England practicing and teaching at the Architectural Association and Royal College of Art. In this period, Krier's statement: “I am an architect, because I don’t build”, became a famous expression of his uncompromising anti-modernist attitude. In 1987-90 Krier was the first director of the SOMAI, the Skidmore, Owings & Merrill Architectural Institute, in Chicago, an initiative by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill .
He received the inaugural Richard Driehaus Prize for Classical Architecture in 2003
Krier is a prominent critic of architectural modernism, mainly of its functional zoning and the ensuing suburbanism, Krier campaigns for the reconstruction of traditional European city models. These ideas had a great influence on the New Urbanism movement, both in the USA and Europe.
He acts as architectural consultant on urban planning projects but only designs the buildings of his personal choice.