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Farrell proposes Battersea alternative

Architect Terry Farrell & Partners has put forward proposals for Battersea Power Station which it said offered an incremental two step plan which might overcome recent setbacks in the development.

Fears have escalated that the multi-billion pound plan could become mired in delay once more, after the Lloyds and Ireland’s National Management Asset Agency told property firm Real Estate Opportunities they had started the administration process for two subsidiary firms that own the site in a bid to claw back £324 million of debt. Oriental Property Limited is also chasing £178m.

The action could endanger the Northern Line extension to Nine Elms and Battersea, one of the priority projects earmarked by the government in the autumn statement, because the it relies on investment from the power station developer.

Farrell’s proposal is to create a finished monument at a very early stage by retaining the front and back elements of Battersea Power Station’s iconic chimneys. From most river views this would retain the full convincing form of the building by constructing a grand muscular monument with an open colonnade screen along the two flank walls, the architect said.

From the river, this would appear solid and retain the full grandeur of the buildings form. From the sides, however, it would be open so that within the site and from the surrounding flats there would be views through the colonnade into a large generous parkland for people to enjoy, the firm said. The park could be used for leisure and occasional events as have already taken place here over the years.

“As for the transport connections, for now we could spend a fraction of the amount it would cost for a new tube station on a surface tram link or a shuttle bus service to Vauxhall station. When the tube line is up and running, which could take many years, it can service the increased people traffic there. A second phase could then involve the reconstruction of the walls and the roof to contain what is considered to be viable and appropriate at that point in time,” a statement from  Terry Farrell & Partners said.

Lead architect Sir Terry Farrell said: “This is a pragmatic and incremental approach to enable the redevelopment of this famous landmark sitting in one of the largest and most valuable regeneration sites in Central London. In many ways, this strategy is already on its way to being realised as there is one long flank wall missing as well as the roof itself.

“The key to this strategy is that it will be, and will be seen to be, complete at each stage so that the redevelopment project can get started and make positive and rapid progress.”

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