London - The skyline of London has a new skyscraper. Inaugurated early in July, The Shard took its place alongside the famous Gherkin and rose into the sky over the British capital. Located on the banks of the Thames, The Shard is the highest skyscraper in Europe. However, measuring 310 meters high (1,016 ft), it still remains far behind the world's tallest, Burj Khalifa in Dubai, which culminates at 828 meters (2,716 ft).
The Italian pope of architecture Renzo Piano, the architect who also built the Centre Pompidou in Paris, designed The Shard. The tall structure overlooks the British capital and reflects its image on the faceted glass. The tower rears in the sky and becomes thinner and thinner until forming a pic at its top edge. The name The Shard was given after Renzo Piano’s description of the development as a “shard of glass” during the conception.
The event at the beginning of the month celebrated the completion of 12 years of work, in time for the start of the London Olympics Games (July 27th-August 12th). But while the outer part of the skyscraper is complete, work will continue inside the building until next year, the opening to the public is planned in February 2013. Over 18,000 people have already registered online to visit the tower. The developers aspire to make The Shard a symbol of London, such as the Empire State Building is to New York.
When complete, The Shard will offer 95 floors and an observatory for the public with a 360 ° panoramic view. It promises to become one of London's top tourist attractions. According to Renzo Piano, The Shard is a "vertical town" which will include the five-star Shangri-La Hotel, luxury restaurants, offices, and shops, creating more than 12,000 jobs. The 53rd to 65th floors will be dedicated to 10 luxury private apartments (the highest on the UK market). The luxury to live with a stunning view has a price: the apartments are to sell in the range of 30 to 50 million pounds, (47 to 78 million dollars). The construction amounted to 2.2 billion dollars, financed at 80% by four banks and investment funds of the Emirate of Qatar.
Archi & Design - Architecture
by Jil Billaudel | Friday, 27 July 2012