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Zaha's 'daring' Mind Zone designs unveiled

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The New Millennium Experience Company has finally revealed the designs for the Mind Zone by Zaha Hadid (centre and bottom), while the latest floorplan of the Millennium Dome's interior (top) shows how it all fits together.

At a press briefing planned for today, the nmec was set to show Hadid's scheme as the 'architecturally most daring' of all, combining art and technology in the exploration of the human mind.

Composed of several levels, it is described as a 'fluid structure', with decks curving and interweaving with one another as they ascend towards the roof of the Dome. Visitors enter by passing under the zone's giant central projection screen. The zone aims to celebrate the unique creativity of the human brain by exploring senses and perceptions, through exhibits and galleries designed to 'surprise, entertain and inspire visitors of all ages'. Film, painting and sculpture will be combined with it such as satellite imaging, infrared sensing and robotics. Hadid said: 'It is visually seductive. Distinctions between floors, walls and ceilings disappear as these surfaces flow around in one smooth movement. We hope visitors will find the zone both intriguing and stimulating and that they come away with a far greater understanding of just how creative they can be.'

The zone also looks at the concept of spatiality as visitors pass through a series of spaces ranging from narrow tunnels and corridors to wide open expanses, and up to the final upper bridge for panoramas of the Dome. The Mind is one of 14 zones in the Dome and is situated to the left of the entrance, between the Spirit and the Work/Learn zone.

Also set for a launch was Nigel Coates' new 27m-tall Body Zone design, which has evolved from the initial parent and child to an abstract form representing male and female, facing the entrance and containing a multimedia show. Visitors go in through the base of the torso, up an escalator in the arm and out through the legs. Every hour 4000 visitors will pass through it. Images were unavailable as the aj went to press.

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