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Allies and Morrison reveals £1.5bn Cricklewood revamp

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Allies and Morrison is masterplanning a £1.5 billion 'piece of city' for a major north London site that could include a cluster of tall buildings.

Plans include at least one 47-storey skyscraper for the key site in Cricklewood (pictured), described by developers as a 'gateway' to the city.

Jonathan Joseph, development manager of Cricklewood Redevelopment, said the scheme was 'effectively a new town'. And he added that the suburb was one of the few locations in the capital that would benefit from a cluster of tall buildings.

However, Barnet Borough Council is undecided on whether to support the principle of a cluster on the site. Planning officer Martin Cowey said while Barnet's UDP did not rule out the possibility of tall buildings, a team of consultants had been employed to help it with the decision.

The masterplan for the 54ha site includes the creation of 4,000 new homes. There will be 400,000m 2of office space, neighbourhood retail and community facilities. A new station on the Thameslink line will serve the development.

Following an agreement with the owners of Brent Cross Shopping Centre, the masterplan will now extend beyond the North Circular and include the redevelopment of the shopping centre.

A decision has yet to be made on how the £1.5 billion worth of work will be parcelled out among different architects over the 10 years of the project.

Joseph said: 'There is going to be a huge amount of work. I expect the architectural profession will relish the opportunity to be involved.'

Bob Allies, partner in charge of the project at Allies and Morrison, said it was like 'a small piece of city'. While his role was that of masterplanner, he said he also hoped to design a building on the site.

And he added: 'Tall buildings will only happen if everyone thinks it's a good idea. Public consultation supported tall buildings on that site because of its position at the bottom of the M1.'

Allies and Morrison expects to submit an outline planning application in the summer.

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