One of London's greatest historic architectural landmarks is to make a comeback, as plans to restore the iconic Crystal Palace and its surrounding grounds have been revealed.
Shanghai-based ZhongRong group, along with engineers Arup, are looking to build a £500 million attraction around the Crystal Palace exhibition centre, using Sir Joseph Paxton's original 1851 design as the centrepiece.
Paxton's design, very much of the Beaux-Arts school, made use of towering sheets of glass in the walls and across the ceilings, giving the 990,000 square foot building its crystal-like look. Originally erected in Hyde Park to house the Great Exhibition in 1851, it was rebuilt in South East London in 1854 where it stood proudly as a visitors attraction for many years before being destroyed by a fire in 1936.
The regeneration of the Crystal Palace and its park area will also see listed Italian terraces restored along side visitor-favourites including the hedgerow maze and scientifically-questionable full-scale models of dinosaurs that also date back to the Victorian era. If all goes well, construction should begin in winter 2015. [Evening Standard]