Battersea revamp could destroy building's 'core beauty'

An article asking whether the redevelopment of London's Battersea Power Station will destroy the landmark building's 'core beauty' features in today's newspaper round-up.

Writing in the Guardian, architecture critic Oliver Wainwright says the "prospect of new life being breathed into this ailing brick beast should be welcome, but one question lingers. When the building is throttled by zig-zagging apartment blocks and filled with a mixed-use leisurescape of brand-conscious shoppers, brand-aware offices and brand-seeking luxury resident-adventurers, just how much of its original brand will remain?".

Also in the Guardian, columnist Simon Jenkins says if comedian Russell Brand and TV presenter Jeremy Paxman "are so keen on a new politics, why don't they run for mayor?" Jenkins says: "Mayors are direct democracy. They are cool. They do things and have to account for them. Mayoralty is the perfect outlet for a couple of old fogeys moaning on television that voting isn't what it used to be." He adds: "Modern cities feast on direct election and a mandate distinct from central government. They are ideally suited to the likes of Paxman and Brand."

Driverless cars will transport people through the streets of Milton Keynes from 2015, "in the biggest test yet of the futuristic vehicles in Britain", the Guardian reports. According to the newspaper, Vince Cable, the business secretary, "announced that 20 of the vehicles will travel on special pathways separated from pedestrians around the Buckinghamshire town's shopping centre".

A wind turbine installed by the Welsh Assembly to cut its electricity bill will eventually pay for itself - in 452 years’ time, the Times (subscription) reports. The newspaper says that "civil servants have been blamed for insisting that the turbine was erected next to the Welsh government’s offices in Aberystwyth, which are in a sheltered spot, rather than on a clifftop near the windswept Cardigan Bay".

The Times also reports that 60,000 bats may be killed by wind turbines each year, according to a study by American researchers. The newspaper says that the figure, based on statistical analysis of rates of dead bats found close to 21 turbines, suggests that wind energy could be harmful to certain migratory species".

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