The future of 3XN's controversial Museum of Liverpool on the city's much-debated Fourth Grace site finally looks to have been secured after a surprise U-turn by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
Almost a year after Lottery bosses threw out a bid to help fund the fit-out of the contentious X-shaped building (Architect rebuts claims that latest Fourth Grace effort is dead
), the HLF has dramatically agreed to pump £11.4 million into the project - a replacement for Will Alsop's doomed Cloud proposals.
The news comes as work started on an archaeological dig on the waterfront site, which sits next to the city's famous Three Graces.
The promised cash injection - which will still need a HLF Stage Two rubber stamp - brings the total amount of funds raised to more than £50 million. However, the museum will still need to find another £15 million if it is to be completed as originally envisaged.
It is understood that the HLF decided to change its mind after seeing a revised, and more detailed, plan of what the museum chiefs wanted to showcase in the new building.
Architects will be interested to learn that the recently restored model of Edwin Lutyen's behemoth, but unrealised, Liverpool Cathedral project has already been earmarked as the centerpiece of the new People's City exhibition area.
The other three themed sections will be titled the Port City, the Global City, and the Creative City.by Richard Waite