First £34M phase of the £100M Earth Centre is scheduled to open in 1999. This Millennium landmark project is located at a 160ha fomer colliery site on the River Don near Doncaster. 'It is a place,' says the marketing information 'at which a great national debate about what sort of future we want can be stimulated and informed as the basis of a new preferred direction for society.'
Attractions in phase one include 9ha of innovative landscaping and three buildings. The structures are devoted to Planet Earth with design by Fielden Clegg and Atelier One; WaterWorks and Future Works both designed by Alsop & Stormer. Contractor for all is Bovis. Earth Centre is seeking funding from the EC for the £20M 'butterfly'-shaped landmark building designed by Future Systems.
The centre will play its part in regenerating the Dearne Valley, creating, the promoters claim, 600 jobs by 2000. There will also be an Ecopolis research and business park. JW