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Zoo time

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Having just received his cbe from the Queen, it was not surprising that Roland Paoletti was in fine form at London Zoo last week, talking about the Jubilee Line extension at an event organised by Lignacite. He recalled the cultural changes he had to make at London Underground. 'When I started, I was told by an lu architect that 'it doesn't matter how much you spend, as long as it looks cheap'.' Delighted at the new standards especially in terms of provision of lifts and escalators, he believes there is still a way to go. 'We should have escalators going down from ground level - we are told that is not the way we do it in London, but it is especially good in the rain and the sleet.' Paoletti referred approvingly to his mentor, Nervi, who believed all projects should be design-and-build. 'Architects should be contractors. If they went about it properly, they should be the owners of the contracting process.' Of the Jubilee Line architects, only Chris Wilkinson was there. Perhaps he was a little disturbed by Paoletti's assertion that all the station designers' work was very much alike. Says Paoletti: 'They are as different as guardsmen out of uniform.'

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