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Arup Associates tries once again, Bristol fashion

Arup Associates has unveiled further details of its revised scheme for the 6.8ha Canon's Marsh site in the centre of Bristol, now submitted for planning permission.The changes were drawn up with Richard Burton of Ahrends Burton & Koralek in response to the 10 issues identified by the council when it rejected the scheme in March this year.

One of the major changes to the scheme is the decision by developer Crest Nicholson to place all the parking underground, most of it at a half-level below the buildings, obviating the need for ventilation. This has allowed the designers to lower the height of the buildings, one of the initial criticisms of the scheme.

In total there will be 360 homes on the site, 25,000m 2of leisure use and 25,000m2 of office development. The scheme centres around the axis between New World Square, part of the Bristol 2000 development, and the SS Great Britain, with a 100m-long promenade which is partly a 30m-wide green space and partly an arcade which will be open 24 hours a day.

The housing, most of which will have views of water, will have raised communal gardens, visible but not accessible from the public domain. The leisure building, which includes a multiplex cinema, a hotel, restaurant and casino, has been 'disaggregated' and includes a viewing tower. This would be the first part of the site to be developed, as it needs no decontamination treatment.

Meanwhile, arguments continue, with the Bristol Venice consortium, headed by local architect George Ferguson and with anonymous backers also submitting a scheme for planning permission. A public meeting to discuss the two schemes will be held on Monday 1 November.

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