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Letchworth goes global with Garden City competition

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Letchworth, the world-renowned Hertfordshire Garden City, is to launch an international competition to design a new wave of 'affordable and sustainable homes'.

A century after the last design contest - the city held national competitions in 1905 and 1907 to find 'innovative housing costing no more than £150' - the search is on again to find the next generation of 'cheap cottages'.

This latest competition is sure to attract interest form a raft of practices from around the globe drawn by the hugely important position the town the world's first garden city - holds in the history of urban design.

Parker and Unwin's original Letchworth plans are seen as the first significant attempt to put Ebenezer Howard's world-famous Garden City principles into practice.

An exhibition showcasing the 131 entries into the original 1905 competition attracted 60,000 visitors to Letchworth.

The contest will officially be launched by the Duke of Devonshire on Thursday 1 February 2007 at an event at the RIBA.

by Richard Waite

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