David Cameron breaks ground at Battersea

Kasmira Jefford
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PRIME Minister David Cameron said the £8bn redevelopment of Battersea Power Station showed Britain was “open for business” yesterday as work to restore Europe’s largest red-brick building got underway.

Speaking at an official ceremony to mark the ground breaking at the 39-acre site, also attended by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and London mayor Boris Johnson, Cameron said: “We are competing in a tough global race and the work that starts today, that will see the iconic Battersea Power Station restored and lead to the regeneration of the Nine Elms area bringing 3,500 homes and 15,000 jobs, shows that Britain is open for business.”

The redevelopment comes 80 years after the power station first generated electricity and 30 years since it was decommissioned.

Since then it has seen a string of developers try and fail to revive it over the past two decades, and was last year rescued from administration by a Malaysian consortium for £400m.

The first phase of the redevelopment includes the building of 800 apartments nearby as well as the £100m refurbishment of the power station – including demolishing and rebuilding the iconic four towers. It is expected to be completed by 2016.