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New designs sought for Aberdeen City Square

New designs are being sought to replace a planned scheme by architect Brisac Gonzalez in the centre of Aberdeen.

The issue has been opened up as part of an international competition to seek ideas for what has been called City Square.

Plans by Brisac Gonzalez for a £13M arts project in the city’s Union Terrace Gardens were shelved last year in favour of the larger redevelopment.

A public consultation found that local people wanted the existing gardens to be at the heart of any redevelopment, which led to the £140M scheme being renamed City Garden Project.

A pledge of £50M towards the project has been made by local businessman Ian Wood, who made his £960M fortune in the oil and fishing industries.

The scheme will create new civic and cultural facilities as well as reconfiguring existing railway and road links.

Malcolm Reading, who is running the competition, said it would be formally launched next month with shortlisted designs being made public in September.

He said: “It’s not a commercially driven scheme but an amazing example of civic philanthropy on a Victorian scale.”

Wood is a member of a group of business leaders called Aberdeen City & Shire Economic Future which is running the scheme along with Aberdeen City Gardens Trust, which includes gardens owner, the city council.

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