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RIBA goes green with new rooftop garden

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The riba has a new roof garden at its 66 Portland Place headquarters after two garden designers offered to work on the project for free.

Helen McCabe and Elsie Josland of Josland-McCabe Design for Gardens worked within design criteria of the presence of the Patisserie Valerie cafe, the need to work with the fountain 'Water Trellis', loaned by artist William Pye, and loadbearing restrictions on the roof.

The £7000 project, which includes planters on castors, was sponsored by British Steel, Patisserie Valerie, compost specialist Roffey, H20 Irrigation and Clifton Nurseries.

riba director general Alex Reid said that the pair had 'created a fine sculptured garden in what was a sombre and somewhat uninviting space'. After awarding the Jane Drew Prize to Kathryn Gustafson, it was another example of the 'increasingly productive collaboration between architects and landscape and garden designers,' he added.

The garden will be opened officially on 9 September.

A multi-cultural arts centre to overlook Cardiff Bay has won outline planning consent. Penoyre & Prasad's £4 million design with a curved gallery, raised viewing platforms and a lift tower will be topped by a mast. It will host theatre, banquet and dance events on a 3000m2 footprint. Building is due to start next April with Welsh Arts Council and European funding.

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