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Ripe for regeneration: Europan's UK sites

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The Architecture Foundation has unveiled the three UK sites it has selected for Europan 6, the biennial architectural and design competition which this year has 'the interrupted town' as its theme.

The sites shown here for the continent-wide competition, which is aimed at unearthing new talent, include two from the capital - in Hackney and in Southwark - and one from Manchester.

The 4.5ha Hackney site is the Woodberry Down estate and the aim is to regenerate and design housing to create a mixed cultural and economic community. The foundation says it needs 'radical restructuring' and the council, with which it is working, is keen to see 'innovative housing ideas'. A sum of £22.5 million has been approved for the area from a Single Regeneration Budget bid, around two thirds of which will be allocated to housing on the estate.

The former 'Flaxyard' site in Peckham, adjacent to Alsop & Stormer's well-received library, is the subject of Southwark's involvement. It has lain derelict for at least a decade and the organisers want architects to investigate development opportunities including 'new patterns of contemporary living'. Southwark Council and Peckham Partnership has £260 million for a seven year programme of regeneration.

The Manchester site, Collyhurst, is a post-war social housing estate on the north-east edge of the city centre. Competition entrants are asked to look at how to transform the tower block typology into a new type of community. Developer Urban Splash is involved and is in the process of buying part of the land.

Judges of Europan for the UK will include AJ editor Isabel Allen, CABE commissioner Les Sparks, Pierre d'Avoine, Ken Yeang, Patrick Bellew and Sarah Wigglesworth. It is also hoped Harry Gugger from Herzog & de Meuron and client representative Sylvie Pierce will come on board.

There is no guarantee that winning schemes will be built, but winners pick up a prize of £6,000 and one runner up with each of the three sites gets £2,400.

Submissions must be made by February 2001 and competition winners will be announced in June. Further information is available from the RIBA competitions office on 0113 2341335 or the Internet site at www. archi. fr/EUROPAN

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