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Luxury hotels planned in City of London—for insects

PUBLISHED: 13:00 02 April 2010 | UPDATED: 15:49 05 October 2010

A CONTEST to design luxury hotels for insects’ in London gets under way this week. The shortage of hotels’ in the City has been an ongoing problem for humans. Now the City of London Corporation believes there’s an equal shortage among the tiny bugs that live in our public parks

By Mike Brooke

A CONTEST to design 'a luxury hotel for insects' in London gets under way this week.

The shortage of 'hotels' in the City has been an ongoing problem for humans for years.

Now the City of London Corporation believes there's an equal shortage among the tiny bugs and invertebrates that live in our public parks.

The Corporation is launching its Beyond the Hive competition with British Land property group to coincide with the London Festival of Architecture this summer.

"We want people to design a five-star hotel for insects," said a spokesman. "But the aim is to encourage biodiversity in London in the International Year of Biodiversity."

Anyone taking part with an eye for insect creature comforts can submit proposals for an 'ecologically-sustainable insect habitat.'

Five designs are to be selected and the shortlisted teams then build their 'hotel' at one of five public gardens in the Square Mile, at St Dunstan's-in-the-East near the Tower of London, Bunhill Fields in City Road, West Smithfield by St Bart's Hospital, Postman's Park in King Edward Street near St Paul's and Cleary Garden near the Bank.

Judges hand out 'Golden Beetle' awards in two categories, one chosen by a professional panel of expert and the other by the public invited to look at the completed 'hotels' and vote for their favourite structure online.

One of the judges, Adrian Penfold from British Land, said: "This will stir the industry with architectural solutions and make their 'hotel' the place where all the bugs want to stay."

The other judges are the Commission for the Built Environment chairman Paul Finch, architect Graham Stirk, Buglife conservation organisation's Sarah Henshall and the City Corporation's Peter Wynne. Closing date for entries is May 7.

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