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London skyscraper developments

wjfox2007

New Member
Hi all

This is my first post here. Sorry if this seems rather long, but I feel it’s an important issue for London! :)

As you may be aware, a number of stunning new landmarks are being planned for London – on a par with Foster’s Gherkin and perhaps even better. These new buildings include the “Shard of Glass", set to become the tallest building in Western Europe.

Others include the Bishopsgate Tower and the Leadenhall Building, and there are several others, all designed by some of the world’s top architects. You can see a comprehensive rundown in this thread - http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=413465

Suffice to say, these towers will massively enhance London’s image, just as the Gherkin has done. The combined effect of this emerging cluster will be a skyline of truly world class architecture, hopefully built in time for the 2012 Olympics (when the eyes of the world will be focussed on London). Unlike places like Dubai and Shanghai, these towers won’t be insanely tall or over-the-top. They will be sensitive and considerate to the London skyline, yet at the same time beautiful and striking in appearance. In other words, they will “fit” into London very well. Also - they will have public viewing decks and restaurants offering stunning views from high up.

Having got through a decade of negotiations and planning hurdles, most of these towers are due to start construction any time now.

Unfortunately – and this is really the point of my thread – the heritage body UNESCO have recently visited London. They are concerned about the historic setting of the Tower of London, and are requesting these projects be cancelled. They also want the planning authorities to limit virtually all future highrise developments in the City. This, despite years of detailed planning, the incredibly strict guidelines already in place, the need for London’s financial sector to expand, and the dynamic mixture of “old and new” that London is already famous for! The skyscrapers won’t even be visible from most views... only from the east, and even then a considerable distance away. The Shard of Glass, for example, will be over a kilometre away on the other side of the river!

UNESCO are a valuable organization, but they are going way too far with London. They completely miss the point about this city and the way it has to evolve and develop. If you care about London’s future, then please support the Shard of Glass and the Bishopsgate Tower. You can do this by signing my petition which is going directly to the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone:-

>>> http://www.petitiononline.com/ldntower/petition.html <<<

I’d appreciate your comments on these planned skyscrapers as well. Trust me - if you like the Gherkin, you’re going to LOVE these new towers.

Many thanks

Will Fox












 

untethered

For industry & decency
London doesn't have to develop this way, does it?

It's being developed this way because it makes the most money for the developers and generates the most "prestige" for the architects.

Interesting how you think that a building that will be the tallest in western Europe will be sensitive and not insanely over-tall. How does that work?

Sorry my friend, but you sound like a developer's press release.
 

wjfox2007

New Member
I don't work for a developer and I have absolutely zero interest in the monetary side of these towers! I'm just an architecture enthusiast who's been following their progress, and I think they'll make a stunning addition to London. The Gherkin has already established itself as one of the most popular new buildings in the UK; these new towers will be even better (in my opinion).

The City most certainly needs these towers - if you read the (very logical) points in my petition then you'll see why.

And no, the Shard won't be "insanely tall". It's only going to be 300 metres or so - which is less than the Eiffel Tower, and only about 15 floors taller than Canary Wharf in the Docklands. By comparison, there are dozens of 500-800m towers being built all over Asia, including the world's tallest going up in Dubai (850m). Anyway, why shouldn't developers in London strive to make a profit?
 

wiskey

Albatross Admirer
i would much rather have non-uniform shapes and designs, but i worry that glass will look shit in 50 years (if it lasts that long) like concrete does now.
 

untethered

For industry & decency
wjfox2007 said:
The City most certainly needs these towers - if you read the (very logical) points in my petition then you'll see why.
Your argument for the economic necessity of these towers is completely unsupported.

Firstly, there is no demonstrable imperative to intensify the City. There is considerable scope for expansion in Docklands and other parts of London, not to mention other parts of the UK.

Secondly, it's quite possible to achieve a similar increase in density without building these kinds of buildings should such a thing be required or desirable.

New ideas - good. New architecture - good. This is not good architecture and I don't see any evidence of particularly original thinking other than "let's make it bigger and wackier than the last one".

wjfox2007 said:
And no, the Shard won't be "insanely tall". It's only going to be 300 metres or so - which is less than the Eiffel Tower, and only about 15 floors taller than Canary Wharf in the Docklands. By comparison, there are dozens of 500-800m towers being built all over Asia, including the world's tallest going up in Dubai (850m). Anyway, why shouldn't developers in London strive to make a profit?
To me, that is insanely tall. Canary Wharf is enormous.

People in Asia can make their own decisions about how they develop their cities according to local conditions. This kind of thing is neither necessary or desirable in London right now.

I'm happy for developers to make a profit but not for every other consideration to be sacrificed to allow them to maximise their profits.
 

Blagsta

Minimum cage, maximum cage
wjfox2007 said:
The City most certainly needs these towers - if you read the (very logical) points in my petition then you'll see why.
Fuck the city.

I love the gherkin though.
 

Crispy

The following psytrance is baṉned: All
Love the shard, and the cheesegrater. not so sure about the curly-wurly though. Have you seen the base of it? ug-ly :)
 

beeboo

geek chic
I heard something the other day about how much the financial industry and specifically the City contributes to the national economy via tax etc (can't remember the figures but they were boggling).

Which helps explain why the Govnt is so keen to court the City and ensure that financial business (which given it's increasingly global nature could be conducted anywhere, it doesn't have to in London or this country). So ensuring that there are adequate and attractive offices in and around the City is quite a high priority.

Not saying 'that makes it all OK', but it's just a bit of context :)

I rather like some of these new towers. And I love the Gherkin (but doesn't everyone - it must be one of the most popular buildings in London!) - every time I see it I think 'ooh!'.

I think the glass shard at London Bridge could be a bit of a 'stunner' as well
 

Belushi

01 811 8055
R.I.P.
I love skyscrapers so no objection to them per se, although Im swayed by the case that they should be concentrated in the Docklands rather than the City, Im also concerned that views of the wonderful Gherkin are going to be compromised.
 

jæd

Corporate Hooker
untethered said:
Secondly, it's quite possible to achieve a similar increase in density without building these kinds of buildings should such a thing be required or desirable.
How...? The point of a skyscaper is that its a building that contains lots of people crammed into a small physical footprint. How are you going to do the same with a four-story building...? :confused:
 

Cid

嗯嗯
Tbh I have no desire for more glass penises, they often make for unpleasant work environments (the Gherkin, for example, may have become 'iconic' but apparently it's a shit place to work) and these ones aren't especially interesting in design terms. Aside from that there are the environmental issues presented by that amount of glass, as well as the fact that the systems for such high buildings are particularly uneconomical.
 

beeboo

geek chic
Cid said:
Tbh I have no desire for more glass penises, they often make for unpleasant work environments (the Gherkin, for example, may have become 'iconic' but apparently it's a shit place to work) and these ones aren't especially interesting in design terms. Aside from that there are the environmental issues presented by that amount of glass, as well as the fact that the systems for such high buildings are particularly uneconomical.
I agree the environmental credentials (both in building and maintainance) of new structures - be they glass shard or maisonette -should be scrutinised more and there should be higher standards against which they are assessed.

I thought people liked "workin' in the Gherkin" but I could be wrong :)
 

PacificOcean

Unhinged User
Dask said:
Bring on the skyscrapers! London needs to move into the 21st century.
Seconded.

Why is there always this almost luddite approach to tall buildings?

I have never understood the argument against tall buildings regarding them spoiling the view of St. Pauls. Unless you are standing next to it, there are very few places in London you can see it anway.
 

Reno

The In Kraut
Cid said:
(the Gherkin, for example, may have become 'iconic' but apparently it's a shit place to work)
I know someone who works there and loves it. I got to go and visit there once and loved the inside. I suppose the word "apparently" can be used to support any old opinion ;)
 

beeboo

geek chic
Do you think you could have made the point without the picture - it makes me go cold just to look at it :(

(E2A - picture converted to a link :) )

I think it's a fairly weak argument against tall buildings TBH - nobody suggested we should shut down the tube after 7/7.

I think some of the current proposed builidings had to go back to the drawing board post-9/11 in order to ensure that evacuation was easier and that the structures were more robust.
 

Streathamite

ideological dogmatist
beeboo said:
Do you think you could have made the point without the picture - it makes me go cold just to look at it :(

I think it's a fairly weak argument against tall buildings TBH - nobody suggested we should shut down the tube after 7/7.
two excellent points
 

Tom A

Goat among sheep
Apart from costing millions, what will these proposed "landmarks" going to do for the ORDINARY people of London, eh? (There are still a few of AFAIK, albeit as an endangered species being forced out by yuppies and gazillionaries.) :rolleyes:
 

ELO

Banned
Banned
beeboo said:
I heard something the other day about how much the financial industry and specifically the City contributes to the national economy via tax etc (can't remember the figures but they were boggling).
You were proberbly watching the same thing as me-'excess in the city' wasn't it?

I would question, though, whether this is 'real' money. Obviously it is real in the sense you can count it at the end, but is it real in the sense of wealth generation or is it purely what has been syphoned off from other, more tangable aeras of the economy?


Do you think you could have made the point without the picture - it makes me go cold just to look at it ...I think it's a fairly weak argument against tall buildings
Well obviously he could have made the point without, but the image certainly brought the risk home to us. It shouldn't be used as the main argument against tall buildings, but it is something to be considered.
 
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