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Conran aims high in Sheffield

Conran & Partners has been given the go-ahead - at the second attempt - for this 32-storey residential tower in Sheffield city centre.

The centrepiece of the St Paul's Place redevelopment, the redesigned £35 million skyscraper for the City Lofts Group, will become the city's tallest building.

Back in July, Sheffield council decided to turn down a similar scheme for a 33-storey tower because of fears about its impact on the city-centre conservation area (ajplus 25.07.05).

However, on Monday (17 October), the city's planning committee finally gave the green light to the controversial scheme, that will also feature a 10-storey stone building, a rooftop garden and a new lift and stairwell for pedestrians walking from the nearby station.

Practice director Paul Zara said: 'It was a very important decision for Sheffield and we obviously think they've made the right one.

'It is a complex, crafted building, using unfamiliar materials and of a quality more associated with civic rather than commercial buildings.'

He added: 'We hope people will grow to love it, though we are aware that its scale has made it a little hard for some to take on board.'

Work is expected to start on site in April next year and is due to finish before the end of 2008.

by Richard Waite

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