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Bermondsey Square named London’s best new public space

Bermondsey Square has been named as London's best new public space at the London Planning Awards held at City Hall on Thursday night.

Bermondsey Square
Every Friday morning Bermondsey Square is filled with the stalls of Bermondsey Antiques Market
London River Park
The award-winning London River Park concept seen from Bankside
London River Park
How London River Park could transform the Pool of London

The citation for Bermondsey Square's award was read by Deputy Mayor of London Sir Simon Milton. He said: "Developed in partnership with users and neighbours, this precise design is carefully detailed.

"The revitalised square integrates successfully public and privately managed space and provides a flexible arena for everyday activities and special events, whilst continuing to host Bermondsey's historic weekly antiques market."

Built on a derelict site near the junction of Bermondsey Street and Tower Bridge Road, Igloo's Bermondsey Square development includes a hotel, office space, homes, a cinema, bookshop, supermarket and restaurant. The square now also hosts a weekly farmers' market.

Two other shortlisted SE1 projectsShakespeare's Globe's new Sackler Studios education centre and the White Hart Dock project in Lambeth – failed to win awards on the night.

Meanwhile plans to create a new mile-long floating river walk along the north bank of the River Thames, connecting Blackfriars Bridge with the Tower of London, have won the Mayor's Award for 'planning excellence'.

Designed by global architects and planners Gensler as part of the London 2012 celebrations, the 'London River Park' is a conceptual idea to provide a continuous floating pontoon to run parallel to the existing pathways and streets that currently connect this important stretch of the City of London's river frontage.

The design also includes five large themed pavilions which, following the 2012 Olympic Games, can be used to stage large events and will also deliver a lasting legacy for London by incorporating new riverbus piers and moorings.

"The brilliance of this design, apart from its sheer beauty, is that it will act as a fantastic catalyst for rejuvenating the Thames as a major transport artery," says Boris Johnson, Mayor of London.

"It also respects the northern shoreline allowing users to hop on and off to explore its iconic landmarks and wander through the meandering backstreets of the historic City of London. I am in no doubt that this could become one of the capital's most popular attractions for years to come and urge investors to grab the opportunity to turn this vision into a reality.

"Yet again, the standard of this year's entries is excellent. From libraries and schools to village greens, town squares and even railway lines, the sheer variety of the projects submitted gives me great confidence that progress towards transforming London is reaching every corner of this great city."

The London River Park proposal for the north bank of the Thames potential competes with SE1 architect Michael Davis' London Promenade proposal for the southern bank of the river.

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