The Shard London Bridge finally on a full thrust
Finally….yes finally the Shard London Bridge is slowly but surely becoming a reality. For those of you that have been living in the ice ages, the Shard London Bridge is set to become the UK’s & Western Europe’s tallest building standing at an intimidating 310 metres (1,016 feet) and spanning over 72 floors.
It is to replace the 28 year old Southwark Tower, a 24 storey office building located on 32 London Bridge Street.
The Shard according to the developers, Sellar Property Group is a mixed use ‘vertical city’ that would include a public piazza, Europe’s first Shangri-La Hotel, 5-star restaurants, a public viewing gallery, offices, shops & the highest residential apartments in the UK.
London’s own Super-Tall…
It is the brainchild of prominent Italian architect Renzo Piano who compares his design to “a shard of glass”. The tower’s slender, spire-like form according to Piano would be a positive addition to London’s skyline with a presence that is to be far more delicate than critics of the scheme allege.
The use of sophisticated glazing and angled panes is intended to reflect sunlight & the changing patterns of the sky on the building, in a way that it constantly changes form in line with the weather and seasons.
The Journey so far…
Although planning permission was granted in November 2003, the project has been plagued by a series of delays. When work was expected to kick off in 2005, the long-term leaseholders of Southwark Towers; PriceWaterhouseCoopers were reluctant to vacate the building until August 2007. By September 2007, when the demolition of Southwark Towers was to commence, the major stakeholders, the Halabi Family Trust was forced to sell its 80% stake in the project to a consortium of Qatari investors (QInvest, Qatar National Bank, Quatari Islamic Bank and the developer Barwa Real Estate) for £75m.
Southwark Tower – currently been demolished for The Shard’s construction to commence
We are now proud to say that demolition of Southwark Tower has commenced and would be completed by June 2008. After which, construction of Shard London Bridge would begin, with topping out expected in 2010 and completion by the end of 2011 just in time for the London 2012 Olympics. So watch this space!
Photos of the demolition of Southwark Towers (courtesy SkyScrapercity)
Rendered images of the Shard London Bridge Tower
Floor-by-Floor Demolition of Southwark Towers
The Shard Coming off the Ground
Sub structure construction of Shard London Bridge
Also check out
- The official Shard London bridge website
- Shard London Bridge construction progress article on Building.co.uk