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New buildings for sport and cultural activities should have high ...
New buildings for sport and cultural activities should have high

standards of design, according to an action plan published today.

Better Public Building is the department's contribution to the prime

minister's Better Public Buildings initiative set up to champion

design among public sector construction.

The document welcomes work already done by DCMS' agencies and

sponsored bodies to secure high standards of design and points to a

long list of first rate and landmark projects funded largely by

lottery funds. However, it warns the sectors not to become


In its foreword, DCMS' Ministerial Design Champion, Baroness

Blackstone, said:

'Through our sponsorship of the Commission for Architecture and the

Built Environment (CABE), our stewardship of the National Lottery and

our network of non-departmental public bodies we can lay claim to a

direct involvement in some of the most exciting architecture projects

this country has seen for many years.

'In DCMS we are proud of what we and our non-departmental public

bodies have done but we are also determined not to rest on our

laurels. DCMS will continue to support its sectors in maintaining

their track record for building world-class buildings and we will

argue as loudly and as strongly as we can in government and elsewhere

that good design makes a real difference to people's lives.'

Among the projects highlighted in the action plan are:

- Tate Modern, which last year won the Prime Minister's Better

Public Building Award

- BBC's planned redevelopment of its Portland Place building

- The City of Manchester Stadium

- The Forum, Norwich's new library

- The science adventure centre Magna in Rotherham

DCMS' document was launched alongside five other departmental action

plans at a reception at Tate Modern. All the plans will be published

on a new website, which was also launched today.

The website aims to provide a focal point for the Better Public

Buildings initiative. In the first instance it will publish the

plans, promote the Prime Minister's Better Public Building Award and

provide an access point to a range of cross-government publications

and guidance associated with the initiative. The site also provides a

first point of contact for all with an interest in Better Public


Launching the site, Tessa Blackstone said:

'This website will be an invaluable resource for those in the public

sector with capital projects; it provides both inspiration and

practical guidance. It will also enable staff, users and the wider

community to find out why projects are being carried out and to be

consulted on what is included. This will help ensure ownership by

them of the project.'

At the reception CABE also announced the eight-strong shortlist for

the second Prime Minister's Better Public Building Award.


1. Better Public Building is available on both the Better Public

Buildings website at and on DCMS'

website at It follows the publication in October

2000 of the cross-departmental document Better Public Buildings which

is also available on both sites.

2. Better Public Buildings is being taken forward by a minister from

each department. They meet as the Ministerial Design Champions under

the chairmanship of Lord Falconer.

3. The other departments who published their departmental action

plans today are the Department for Work and Pensions, Home Office,

Department of Trade and Industry, Foreign and Commonwealth Office and

Lord Chancellor's Department. The Ministry of Defence, Department of

Health and Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

have already published their plans. Other departments are expected to

publish their reports shortly.

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