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Viewing tower revealed as part of £10m Worcester cultural revamp
A MASSIVE tower offering a stunning viewpoint of the entire city is set to dominate Worcester's skyline - in a bid to attract thousands of new tourists and boost its national profile.
Your Worcester News can today reveal exciting plans by a major city benefactor to build a 75-foot high tower at the site of the old Royal Worcester Porcelain near the Cathedral.
The landmark will form part of the £10 million cultural quarter and will aim to attract shoppers who want to travel up in a lift and take a look at the Faithful City in all its glory.
We can also reveal that Worcester City Council's planning committee will take a vote on the cultural quarter plans on Thursday, with an in-house report recommending it be approved.
Planners at the council have called the tower plan "bold" and say the entire project deserves to be given the green light so work can start.
The plans for the complex include a new theatre, a raft of cafes and restaurants, workshops for craft stalls or exhibitions, outdoor space for a farmers' market, three open courtyards and 34 units for rent, some of which will become shops for people selling artistic goods.
But at the heart of the development will be the tower, which did not form part of the original vision for the site but has since been added to it as the project progressed.
The hope is that people looking to make a day of it in Worcester will make the viewing tower one of their "must visit" attractions, providing a welcome boost to that part of the city.
Your Worcester News can also reveal how the final cultural quarter plan includes a possible pop-up ice rink at Christmas.
The project is being funded by Colin Kinnear, a retired city businessman and philanthropist who wants to boost the arts scene in Worcester.
The planner's report says the tower in particular could become a "popular visitor attraction" in Worcester and will "add to the draw" of the city.
It also says the attraction is a "level of vision and investment" in Worcester which "is worthy of support and should be encouraged".
Worcester Cathedral is 170ft, with the tower set at a lower level to avoid it becoming a distraction.
If if gets voted through work will start within the coming weeks with a planned opening of May 2015.
It comes as Worcester prepares to make a bid to become the City of Culture for 2021.
Worcester MP Robin Walker said: "This is a very big vote of confidence in Worcester, we all know it's a great place to live and invest.
"It's an intriguing idea and when you tie it in with the City of Culture bid, it's another very big step forward."
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