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Bracing brace of proposals for Brighton pier

Two more practices have stepped into the row over the future of Brighton's West Pier, proposing alternative modern schemes for the site.

London-based AROS has drawn up a concept design at the request of local historian Anthony Seldon, while Foreign Office Architects has also come up with a proposal.

Both designs aim to provide a modern alternative to KSS Sport and Leisure Design's current restoration proposal, which won planning permission in March (AJ 6.3.03). However two recent fires on the pier have triggered renewed calls for a completely fresh approach.

AROS'70m-long scheme is a floating structure tethered to the seabed, that rises and falls with the tide. The structure creates commercial and leisure space, together with a water taxi transport station, performance areas, skateboard ramps and a windsurfing 'beach'. It also has a 60m-high viewing platform and a cable car running the length of the pier.

The FOA scheme leaves the pier's boardwalk clear for promenading and open-air concerts, while below it an enclosed space could be used for conferences, shows and other events.

FOA director Farshid Moussavi told the AJ that she would be delighted to work up the proposals, because 'so much is happening in Brighton'and the pier 'would only add to it'.

Chris Morley, former chair of Brighton and Hove City Council's planning committee, who has been pushing for a modern replacement for the pier, said many of the city's residents would welcome these alternatives.

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