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Battersea backers deny debts will sink Viñoly scheme

The owner of Battersea Power Station, Real Estate Opportunities (REO), has played down fears that a £1.6 billion group debt could scupper the south London project

Rob Tincknell of Treasury Holdings UK told the AJ: ‘It is business as usual at the Power Station’, refuting claims of financial uncertainty reported by the Evening Standard.

‘As far as work on the plans is concerned that are no changes and we continue as usual in our efforts to ensure this important landmark is finally developed,’ said Tincknell, who also announced that the Rafael Viñoly-designed project was still expected to go to planning committee by July 2010.

According to reports, REO’s crippling debts and the collapse of the property market had cast doubts over Viñoly’s masterplan to redevelop the grade II*-listed building designed by Giles Gilbert Scott.

Tincknell added: ‘The story is based around our auditors statement following a delay in the agreement of a waiver in respect of one of our loans. We remain confident that issue will be sorted.’

Despite Tincknell’s rebuttals, detractors continue to criticise the huge development south of the Thames.

‘The single phase multi-billion pound project is just never going to work, its too big, too complex and too difficult to fund,’ said Keith Garner of conservation group Battersea Power Station Company.

‘With the way REO are going I’m afraid it looks like it’s going to be the same as what happened with Parkview,’ said Garner. The site’s previous owners Parkview commissioned architect Nicholas Grimshaw to design a masterplan but kept the development dormant for 13 years.

Real Estate Opportunities bought the site for £400 million in November 2006.

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