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Gillespies reveals rooftop gardens for British Museum extension

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Landscape architect Gillespies has released these designs for roof terraces above Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ £135 million extension to the British Museum in London

The gardens have been designed to offer a ‘tranquil’ and ‘sensory’ experience for staff and visitors to the contentious expansion – known as the World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre.

The scheme features a ‘naturalistic planting style’ intended to create a ‘lively contrast’ with the new building scheduled to complete in late 2013.

Gillespies partner Stephen Richards said: ‘We have selected trees, grasses and seasonal plants that will visually soften the setting of the new building and improve local biodiversity. We are also planting the new roof scape to provide additional wildlife habitat.’

RSHP’s 17,000m² extension to the Grade I-listed museum was initially turned down by local authority Camden Council before being redesigned and then later approved in December 2009.

Former Secretary of State John Denham rejected local conservation group’s demands to ‘call in’ the project two years ago.

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