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Column gives misleading picture of Spitalfields

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I fail to see how your diarist can make the glib value judgement about the comparative merits of the two Spitalfields proposals (Astragal, AJ 1.11.01) when no images of the latest Foster and Partners' scheme have been released.

I would also point out that the scheme does not replace half the existing market. Only the 1928 extension at the western end of the site, which has been disused and hoarded off for some time, will be demolished and replaced by offices and retail. The existing successful stall market, introduced by Spitalfields Development Group and operated by Ballymore, will remain. The market attracts some 300 stalls and 10,000 visitors every weekend and is trading at record levels. Implying that half of it will be replaced is grossly misleading and damaging to local businesses.

You also quote Mr Pearman's assertion that the Alsop scheme 'provides a resolution between developers, local traders and residents'. Well it does not for this developer, nor more than 60 per cent of our local businesses, nor, I suspect, local residents who will have their daylight diminished if this 20-plus-storey sketchette eventuated.

The completion of the last phase of the successful 14-year regeneration of the Spitalfields area - which Mr Pearman will probably not recall, was approved by Parliament - together with its substantial community benefit and remains on track.

Michael D Bear, chief executive Spitalfields Development Group

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