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Gehry in $2 billion Utah city redevelopment

Frank Gehry has been given the go-ahead to redevelop a huge swathe of a Mormon-founded city in the American Midwest.

The international starchitect has been given approval by Utah city officials to redesign a 34ha site in Lehi in a $2 billion (£992 million) development.

Lehi lies 48km south of Utah state capital Salt Lake City and has a population of just 36,000, but will now boast an amphitheatre, a hotel, a shopping centre, restaurants, residential buildings and even man-made lakes, all designed by Gehry.

The architect will also design a 10,000-seat arena for local basketball team Utah Flash, which is hoped to be ready for the 2009/10 season.

The development is being backed by 29-year-old Brandt Anderson, who made his money in computer software, and according to newswire Bloomberg, Anderson hopes to turn the city into a 'focal point for sports and healthy living'.

Work is expected to start early next year, with two of the man-made lakes being built first.

by Richard Vaughan

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