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Martha Schwartz's plans for Spaghetti Junction dropped - image

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International landscape architect Martha Schwartz's top-secret proposals to revamp the infamous Spaghetti Junction have hit the buffers.

The AJ can exclusively reveal that a lack of cash has derailed the unusual regeneration scheme to transform the notorious West Midlands motorway junction.

A spokeswoman for Birmingham City Council confirmed yesterday that the authority 'was not successful in its bid to the Big Lottery Fund's Living Landmarks scheme'.

The council had wanted to turn the junction of the M6 motorway and the Aston Expressway - officially known as the Gravelly Hill interchange - into a landmark gateway for Birmingham.

It is understood that Schwartz, who now works in London having moved from her Boston base, came up with three different designs to rejuvenate the junction which opened in 1972.

The council's spokeswoman said Schwartz's design could form the basis for future funding bids to regenerate the site, but admitted it was unlikely the American's original designs would move forward.

'[With] our partners we have done some excellent work to look at what can be done to transform the area for local communities and visitors to Birmingham and we will be using that work as the basis for bids to other sources of funding.

'We are therefore not at the stage where we are commissioning designers.'

by Richard Waite

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