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Let's make a town

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Fresh from spending £38 million on his own home outside Seattle, Bill Gates has bought one of more modest proportions for his father near Palm Springs in California. It happens to be in the desert, so the Microsoft multi-billionaire (£26 billion and rising) has decided to build a town on the doorstep. As one commentator said: 'He decided that rather than find a nice neighbourhood, it was easier just to build one from scratch.' No prizes for guessing that this will be on 'urban village' lines. First the Duchy of Cornwall's Poundbury, then Disney's Celebration, now Gatesville.

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