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London First throws hat into ring for post-2000 Dome

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London First wants to build a convention centre inside the Millennium Dome when the celebrations are over.

The lobbying group's deputy chief executive, Robert Gordon Clark, told the AJ that he has contacted Dome architect and London First board member Richard Rogers to ask him about the feasibility of building a centre capable of holding 5000 convention-goers in plenary and 11,000 in breakout.

The group may face stiff competition from P&O, however, which has upped its intention to build an exhibition centre there, and from a sports bid for the building by the Sports Council, which would fit in well with future Olympic bids.

Nigel Coates has been brought in to help with the design of the androgynous figure, or Body Zone, inside the Dome. He will be working alongside the designer HP: ICM, with whom he has collaborated on projects at Expo '98 in Lisbon and Powerhouse, the temporary exhibition building at Horse Guards Parade. Powerhouse opens on 2 April.

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