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Peacock Visual Arts “too small” for Danish architects 3XN

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February 24 2006

3XN, the Danish architecture firm currently employed to design the Museum of Liverpool, has pulled out of the shortlist for Peacock Visual Arts in Aberdeen. The Danish firm had been chosen alongside architects such as Reiach and Hall, Richard Murphy and Nicol Russell Studios.
Kim Neilson, project architect with the top Scandinavian firm, said that the firm had not fully realised the size of the project when it applied. “We found out it is only between 1,000-2,000 square metres,” he said. The Museum of Liverpool is somewhere in the region of 10,000 square metres. The firm, which has offices in Arhus and Copenhagen, was also snowed under with work. “We also had to withdraw because we were too busy at the time. We would very much like to participate in competitions in the UK in the future,” he said.
It is the latest twist in the long tale of Peacock Visual Arts, which has been searching for a more prominent home with better facilities than its current site off Queensgate Square since 1998. In 2001 the Salvation Army backed out of the sale of a property on the square and later the University of Aberdeen changed its mind on another proposal.
Lindsay Gordon, director of Peacock Visual Arts made the brave move of suggesting a pavilion in the very centre of Queensgate Street and enlisted Nicol Russell Studios to do a feasibility study. The practice’s track record with arts buildings and its experience in Dundee now make it favourite to win the job.
The new proposals for a pavilion in the centre of Queensgate are still a long way from being secured however. Any work in that spot would require the removal of the 800-year-old Mercat Cross.

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