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Contentious Reid scheme on Thames wins planning - images

The long-running saga surrounding Reid Architecture's plans for a new residential block next to the Tower of London has finally come to an end.

Yesterday (28.02.06) the City of London's planning committee gave the thumbs-up to the contentious Three Quays scheme on the River Thames, ending a two-year battle to get the project off the ground.

The development, which had received the backing of city planning boss Peter Rees, was due to be approved back in June 2004. However, just days before the committee meeting, the government office for London unexpectedly demanded that the practice carry out an environmental-impact assessment.

Now, after a number of false starts, Reid has been given the all-clear to demolish an award-winning 1959 building designed by Brian O'Rourke, which is already on the site, and replace it with 141 luxury apartments.

According to Reid, the new scheme responds to the neighbouring Tower of London World Heritage Site and is sympathetic to key views of the tower from Monument and London Bridge.

Practice director Nigel Ostime said: 'The treatment of the facade is a response to both the materials and layering of the walls and terraces of the Tower of London and the need for openness towards the river.'

The project will also incorporate a water feature designed by William Pye.

by Richard Waite

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