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Landscaping lost at the South Bank Centre

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Letters

What are we not being told about the South Bank Centre (SBC)? Am I alone in failing to understand just what is happening about the landscape element of its redevelopment plans - surely a crucial factor?

You report that a competition has been launched for 'a £15 million project which includes an expanded Jubilee Gardens and landscaping between the rest of the arts buildings on the SBC site' (AJ 12.10.00).

As, in its former winner for the Jubilee Gardens site - Adriaan Geuze and West 8 - the SBC had one of the best landscape architects currently around, it seems that the only reason this competition is being staged is because the SBC is listening far too readily to the whines of a few local residents.

Surely any reservations about Geuze's proposal could have been addressed by him. In his schemes in Rotterdam and elsewhere he has shown great flexibility and inventiveness. It seems absurd that when, for once, we have someone of his stature committed to working on the site, we should show him the exit.Yet another missed opportunity on the South Bank.Mather's masterplan is starting to look like the proverbial pig's ear.

Ivor Patterson, Banbury, Oxfordshire

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