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IN BRIEF

Work to start on Leicester 'gateway'

Leicester City Council has

announced that work on a £1.65m project to transform one of the gateways into the city centre is due to start later this month. A ground-level, 10m (32.8ft)-wide crossing for pedestrians and cyclists will be installed to replace the existing underpass between Granby Street and the station as part of the scheme. Plans include alterations and landscaping to the surrounding areas and the development of a network of cycle lanes, with work set to get underway in the week commencing 24 May. The government's New Growth Point initiative is funding the scheme, which will see the underpass filled in during the summer and work on the new crossing begin in the autumn.

Desborough leisure centre plans approved

Plans for the development of a

new leisure complex at the Grange Estate in Desborough, Northamptonshire, have been awarded the green light by local planners. Kettering Borough Council (KBC) has approved proposals subject to the signing of a Section 106 agreement, which will also include the construction of 13 affordable houses. The first of a two-phase leisure centre development will comprise a four-court sports hall, a fitness suite, changing facilities and an entrance lobby, as well as play areas. However, KBC has called for the proposed site of the new leisure centre to be decontaminated in accordance with government and Environment Agency regulations.

14

By Pete Hayman

Aberdeen City Council (ACC) has revealed that it is working with a consortium of local businesses to create a Merchant Quarter in the city. The venture aims to help

promote tourism, leisure, business and retail opportuni- ties in the city centre, incorpo- rating a wide range of daytime and evening activities. A total of 26 independent

businesses have signed up to the consortium, which aims to create a new cultural "grown- up" area based around food, drink and lifestyle businesses. The vision for Aberdeen also

includes a new artistic gateway, including themed lighting, sculptures and street furniture, while also improving the city's tourism offer.

£114m scheme for Lambeth

Lambeth Council has unveiled plans for the £114m regeneration of the Myatt's Field North estate in south London as part of a new public consultation exercise. Residents living on or

near the estate are being handed the chance to comment on plans, which include sports facilities and a landscaped park. A community centre

and revamped commer- cial units also feature among the plans, in addition to the refurbish- ment of 172 homes.

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Merchant Quarter plans for Aberdeen

Local council working with local businesses to transform historic part of the city

Part of the Green will be included in the planned Merchant Quarter

Merchant Quarter plans will

also feature part of the Green – an area being regenerated under a £2.8m Townscape Heritage Initiative involving a number of public bodies. ACC director of enterprise,

planning and infrastructure, Gordon McIntosh, said: "This area is the historic heart of

Aberdeen and was for many years a bustling, thriving hub of activity. "The concept of a safe, secure

and pleasant environment where people can socialise and enjoy amenities and attractions away from the more boisterous atmosphere on Union Street is bound to be a winner."

Work starts on Heathrow's T2

By Pete Hayman

Demolition work has started at London's Heathrow Airport's first terminal building, which is making way for the develop- ment of a £1bn replacement. The facility, which was

originally designed by architect Frederick Gibberd and officially opened in 1955, was renamed Terminal 2 in 1969 upon the completion of the existing Terminal 1. Forming part of airport

operator BAA's wider £4.8bn investment in improving facilities at Heathrow, the T2 was designed by London-based architects Foster + Partners.

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An artist's impression of T2

HETCo - comprising Ferrovial

Agroman and Laing O'Rourke - has been appointed to deliver the facility, which will boast more than 11,000sq m (118,403sq ft) of floor space for self-service check-in facilities and 15 security search lanes.

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