A row over the remodelling of the British Film Institute’s Imax cinema beside Waterloo station has been defused after lobbying by Kate Hoey, a former sports minister
The South Bank Employers Group (SBEG) appointed architect DSDHA to remodel the area between Waterloo and the South Bank. Early concept designs showed the Imax reclad with digital screens.
The building’s architect, Brian Avery, said he was “appalled” at the idea that the cinema, completed less than 10 years ago, was to be redesigned.
The SBEG responded to Avery’s concerns after he lobbied Hoey, the Vauxhall MP and former culture minister, who is also chair of the South Bank Partnership. A statement from Ted Inman, chief executive of the SBEG, said: “The concepts submitted were part of the process but the selection of DSDHA was not based on the firm’s ideas about remodelling the Imax … the Waterloo City Square project should not in any way be seen as a threat to the Imax.”
A spokesperson for the group added: “Any money we get through for this will not be spent on buying a digital imaging for the Imax cinema.”
Avery said he was still unconvinced by the SBEG ’s denials. He said: “You have to put up a blanket resistance to this sort of thing. They might try it again in a year or so.”