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MP demands answers as Tate Modern extension team changes

Herzog & de Meuron’s ‘off track’ Tate Modern Extension will face new questions in parliament after it emerged the development’s project manager Gardiner & Theobald has been relieved of its core role

The AJ understands Stanhope has been brought in as a senior client adviser following the sidelining of the key consultant on the 11-storey project.

In other developments it has emerged that further revisions are set to be announced to the scheme’s original £215million budget.

The revelations have prompted calls for a ministerial explanation of the problems with the brick-clad project - around one-quarter of which is being paid for from the public purse.

Helen Goodman, Labour’s shadow culture minister, who questioned culture minister Ed Vaizey over the progress of the project in April, has said she will ask further questions of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport – the channel for central-government funding for the project after the parliamentary recess.

She said: ‘There is £50million of taxpayers’ money in this project which is late and going off track.’

‘I am calling on Ed Vaizey, minister for culture to make a statement about the Tate Modern Extension,’ she said. ‘He should tell us what is happening and what he proposes to do about it.’

Originally planned to open in time for the 2012 Olympic Games, the extension is designed to increase the Bankside gallery’s floorspace by 60 per cent, adding more than 20,000m² of new exhibition space.

In September 2011, the Tate said that phase 2 of the development - Herzog & de Meuron’s extension - would ‘open at the latest in 2016’.

The Tate insisted the gallery was still on course for a 2016 opening, but did not specify an exact date.

A statement from the gallery insisted Gardiner & Theobald was still ‘very much involved’ with the project at a ‘senior” level’, but suggested the firm’s role had been altered.

‘As with all major building projects of this scale, the responsibilities of the individuals and consultants on the delivery team change as the development enters different phases,’ it said.

‘Gardiner & Theobald … will continue to have an instrumental role in managing many elements of the build.’

The gallery added that ‘further details’ in relation to its final cost would be announced ‘in due course’.

Gardiner & Theobald was confirmed as project manager for the development in 2008, alongside construction manager Mace. Stanhope worked in a design management advisory role on the conversion of the Giles Gilbert Scott-designed Bankside power station which completed in 2000.

Previous story (AJ 20.01.14)

First peek inside Herzog & de Meuron Tate Modern extension

The first pictures have emerged from inside Herzog & de Meuron’s under construction Tate Modern extension

The snaps were taken as the practice revealed a newly completed bridge across the Turbine Hall, connecting the fourth floor of the Giles Gilbert Scott building to the new galleries within the Swiss architect’s £215 million extension.

The 64.5 metre-tall, brick-clad addition behind the former power station is scheduled to open to the public in 2016.

As well as linking the museum’s galleries the bridge will provide a new vantage point to view exhibitions held in the Turbine Hall. Site specific comissions for the ‘heart’ of gallery will be sponsored by Hyundai from 2015-2025.

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Planning permission was granted in 2009 for Herzog & de Meuron to extend the former power station, which the practice refurbished in 2000.

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