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Beetham London Shrunk

Property developers, the Beetham Organization have shown off the latest modifications they have made to their planned residential tower on the South Bank in London.

Located on the very edge next to the river Thames off Blackfriars the site had previously seen a 219.3 metre tall building proposed but the sheer height and the audacious design that's lead to its nickname, the Boomerang, drew criticism, particularly for the girth around the middle.

The revised plan will have almost 20 floors shaved off and come in now at 180 metres, a reduction of almost 40 but the top of the building will remain as before, a public observation platform although now substantially lower.

There have also been a number of other design changes as the developer and architect, Ian Simpson Architects, respond to the complaints from the likes of CABE with the much criticised overhang over on the corner of Blackfriars Road and Stamford Street also removed.

There have also been substantial changes to how the development is integrated into the streetscape. The affordable housing blocks previously ringed the southern half of the plot and these have now reconfigured with the previous new public space they and the tower would overlook removed replaced instead with a podium with roof garden.

Beetham have also announced the occupier of the hotel in the bottom half of the new tower. An anchor tenant in the lower parts of a Beetham Tower is part of their winning formula however with the usual suspects such as Hilton already well accounted for in London the tenancy will be going to someone more exotic, the luxury Jumeriah brand famed for the Burj Al Dubai. Jumeriah will have 261 rooms of accommodation, topped on the 26th and 27th floors by a spa and gym.

This has lead to a clear time-frame of the development becoming public too as the hotel wishes to open in 2011 giving them enough time to prepare for the coming London Olympics.

With this in mind, work will have to start by 2008 at the latest and Beetham will be hoping for a smoother ride through the planning system this time round. As the local elections are out of the way for another 4 years or so they might just get it.

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