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3XN boss slams 'meddling' Museum of Liverpool

Kim Nielsen, head of Danish practice 3XN, has launched a withering attack on the National Museum of Liverpool (NML) weeks after being dropped from the £50 million flagship scheme.

Nielsen, whose practice was replaced on the controversial waterfront project by executive architect AEW a fortnight ago (News, AJ 15.11.07), accused museum chiefs of constantly meddling with the design.

Speaking exclusively to the AJ, he said: ‘How can the architect perform when the client, against the advice of the architect, makes significant changes in the design agreed to by all parties?’

The Dane’s salvo comes at the same time as rumours that NML may have to reapply for planning permission for the ‘changes’ to the design, including the planned replacement of the travertine stone facade with Jura limestone.

In a leaked letter shown to the AJ, a senior officer at Liverpool City Council admitted the authority’s planners had not been told of any alterations to the proposed materials on the project.

The document reads: ‘The issue of the proposed change of materials was drawn to my notice on the [19 November].

‘There has been no discussion of this with planning officers prior to this. A planning application will be needed to change the materials.’

However, the museum said it would only resubmit plans if asked to do so. A spokesman for NML said: ‘We will, of course, submit a revised application if we are required to do so but, as yet, we have not received notification’.

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