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Mayor's 100 squares picks up major boost

London mayor Ken Livingstone has unveiled the next 10 projects to be given funding as part of his 100 Public Spaces programme.

Speaking on the opening day of the 'Civilising Spaces: Improving London's Public Realm' exhibition at the New London Architecture space, the mayor's announcement marks the third phase of his ambitious scheme to create 'exemplary inner-city spaces for Londoners'.

The 10 new projects will be at: the A1/Highbury Corner, Bow Church, Erith Town Centre, Gants Hill, Kender Triangle/New Cross Gate, Potters Fields Park, The Romford Ring/North Street, Silvertown Quays/Pontoon Dock, Wembley Stadium station square and West India Quay.

Livingstone said: 'As London looks to 2012 to welcome the Olympics, we need to change the face of the entire city.

'The public space projects and initiatives on display in this exhibition are the first steps in turning London into the world's most civilised, people friendly city, establishing a lasting legacy for a better quality of life for Londoners. By making better space, we can make a better city.'

The mayor's programme is a collaboration between Transport for London, the London Development Agency, the London boroughs and the mayor's Architecture + Urbanism Unit headed by Richard Rogers.

Rogers said: 'I have always been passionate about London and urban life. But for too long London's public realm has been neglected and ignored.

Now we have an opportunity to get things right by rebalancing the spaces of the city for people and cars. I believe that the street is the life blood of city life. When well designed, streets and public spaces bring people together in a civilised and safe environment.

Meanwhile, the first of Livingstone's 10 original pilot public spaces scheme has now won planning permission (pictured).

Hawkins\Brown has been given the go ahead to transform Gillett Square - a former car park in Dalston, east London - into a new pedestrianised area.

The £750,000 project is part of a major regeneration programme to convert a brown-field site into a cultural hub for the neighbourhood.

The square is the third phase of a Hawkins\Brown's masterplan drawn up to help Hackney council's efforts to kick start regeneration in the area.

by Richard Waite

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