New kid on the block

London’s highest tower, The Shard, is put under the spotlight by Walls and Roofs.

When driving through the streets of London, which are lined with heritage buildings and cobbled streets, it’s hard not to notice the very massive, very modern pieces of shattered glass touching the clouds rising sharply above London Bridge Station. The Shard sparks a lot of emotion among London’s typically conservative people – pride, controversy and, most commonly, awe.

Rising 309.6 metres above the ground, the tower is being sold as a “vertical town” – – containing everything from offices to residential space, a world-class restaurant and the five-star Shangri-La Hotel. The Shard is now the tallest building in the European Union (EU).

The developers, Sellar Property Group (SPG) and London Bridge Quarter (LBQ), believe that the viewing deck on the 72nd floor, aptly called “The View”, will become one of the city’s greatest tourist attractions. Jointly owned by LBQ (of which the state of Qatar is the majority shareholder) and SPG, the R28-billion project received funding from Qatar National Bank.

Design elite
Perhaps the thing that grabs one’s attention most, is the fact that the magnificent building was designed by Renzo Piano, who explains that “London is a city of inspiration and imagination.”

The Shard changes with nature, reflecting in its glass façade whatever mood nature embraces on a specific day.

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