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The Jubilee Line Extension

Kenneth Powell. Laurence King Publishing, 2000. 208pp. £25

Though by now the story might seem a little too familiar, no one would deny that the Jubilee Line Extension deserves a celebratory book, writes Andrew Mead , and this wellproduced volume from Laurence King Publishing fits the bill.

After an introduction in which he briefly considers the role of design in the development of London's underground system, Kenneth Powell supplies a two-page commentary on each new station in turn.

He is clearly a great enthusiast for the project ('Roland Paoletti inspired this book and made the writing of it an education'), so while his text is always enlightening - on planning and engineering issues as well as users' architectural experience of the end product - the flaws in some stations (eg Southwark, Canada Water, Canning Town, West Ham) go unacknowledged. Meanwhile, superlatives are shared, with Foster's Canary Wharf hailed as 'the point of reference for new railway architecture in London' and Hopkins'Westminster as 'the JLE's supreme architectural expression'.

Drawings are sparse but many excellent photographs, primarily by Dennis Gilbert (who should be credited much more obviously), make a strong visual case for this too-rare enhancement of London's public realm.

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