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Two of a kind

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Who'd be an architect?

The complications of the planning system can be mesmerizing. The conference on design at the 'Interchange' exhibition last week heard of the complex case of Paddington Station. Nicholas Grimshaw & Partners is working on a detailed application for the second phase of the station revamp and for a major commercial complex above a major transfer structure. The scheme would involve demolition of the listed early-twentiethcentury 'Span 4' structure. The scheme opens westwards into Paddington Basin, where the intention is to create a new public square serving both station and the new £400 million St Mary's Hospital complex now being planned. Alas, that is a PFI project which will be the subject of an outline application. The square will therefore be the subject of both a detailed and an outline application at the same time.

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