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Town planners go 'Dutch' probing Canary Wharf

PUBLISHED: 20:47 17 April 2008 | UPDATED: 13:12 05 October 2010

Dutch planners visit Hawkesmoor's famous Spitalfields Church

Dutch planners visit Hawkesmoor's famous Spitalfields Church

TOWN planners arrived in London from Amsterdam to snoop round Canary Wharf business district and the East End s City Fringe area. They are building their own version of Canary Wharf in the Dutch capital and want to see how the Brits did it.

TOWN planners arrived in London from Amsterdam to snoop round Canary Wharf business district and the East End's 'City Fringe' area.

They are building their own version of 'Canary Wharf' in the Dutch capital and want to see how the Brits did it.

The delegation was invited by Tower Hamlets council to find out how the authority managed the planning issues of expanding business districts encroaching into residential areas.

Amsterdam is developing a new financial centre called 'Zuidas,' or South Axis, which aims at becoming the most important economic centre in the Netherlands.

"We came to see how commercial offices in Canary Wharf and the City Fringe have been mixed with other uses," explained delegation leader Wouter van der Veur.

"I was impressed by the East End's markets, creative industries, restaurants and offices.

"It is this mix of activities which makes it an exciting area in London."

Council officers took the 14 Dutch visitors on a tour round Spitalfields with its major investments from Historic Building grants and planning policy controls to encourage more family housing.

The delegates, pictured outside Hawkesmoor's world-famous Christ Church at Spitalfields, walked through Fournier Street conservation area with its preserved 18th century terraced architecture.

But they were just as impressed with the new 21st century Bishops Square and the restored Spitalfields Market on the other side of Commercial Street.

The tour included the redeveloped St Katherine's Dock by The Tower of London as well as the East End's 'nitty gritty' side around Watney Street market and Brick Lane.

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