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AEW heads to High Court over Liverpool Museum job

The case against AEW Architects for ‘professional negligence’ on the £72million Museum of Liverpool will begin next month at the High Court in London

National Museums Liverpool (NML) brought the case against AEW after the riverfront museum was hit by a number of problems following its opening in mid-2011.

According to court documents lodged in November 2011, the museum is accusing the Manchester-based practice of negligence, breach of contract and both ‘defective and dangerous’ workmanship.

NML is now claiming more than £3.5million compensation from the practice to cover the cost of fixing the alleged design problems.

AEW infamously replaced Danish concept architects 3XN on the troubled job in late 2007 (AJ 15.11.07).

In June 2010 the AEW won its first victory over NML - an adjudication panel awarding the practice £500,000 following a disagreement with the museum over unpaid fees. It is understood attempts to settle the latest dispute through mediation failed and a preliminary hearing was convened by Justice Akenhead yesterday with a trial set to begin at the Royal Courts of Justice on 22 April.

A spokesperson for National Museums Liverpool said: ‘We can confirm we are involved in a legal action with AEW. As proceedings are ongoing it is inappropriate for us to comment further at this stage.’

AEW Architects, which refused to comment on the case, is contesting the claim against it by NML.

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