London's 'The Shard'

Project Focus

The Shard in Central London
London's 'The Shard'

At 310m feet and the tallest building in Western Europe, the Shard will provide 84 000m² comprising office space, hotel, residential apartments, restaurants and viewing galleries with unparalleled views of south east England. The Shard was designed with an irregular pyramidal shape from the base to the top, and is clad entirely in glass. Located in a busy part of London, the constrained site is in close proximity to London Bridge Station, a hospital, and a fully operational bus station and replaced Southwark Towers, a 24-storey office building constructed on the site in 1975.

The Shard was designed in 2000 by Renzo Piano, an Italian architect best known for creating Paris’s Pompidou Centre in collaboration with Britain’s Richard Rogers. Turner & Townsend was designated the project manager for the London Bridge Quarter development and its involvement covered the Shard and London Bridge Place, including the infrastructure works around London Bridge rail and bus stations.

The Shard has 72 habitable floors, with a viewing gallery and open-air observation deck on the 72nd floor. The significant logistical PM challenges required innovative solutions at every stage. Demolition and subsequent works were carefully planned and a number of innovative methods were adopted to find the fastest way of delivering the project. A major challenge overcome in the project included dealing with the constraints of a congested capital city without causing disruption to the 54-million people who travel through the area each year. It is a very congested space and with both London Bridge mainline and underground stations it was important to ensure that people remained safe and had a comfortable journey from A to B.

The Shard is arguably the most unique building in London and will probably be seen as a landmark in time. There are a lot of community aspects to the build, but the real legacy is in the statement it sends out. The building was designed to be atmospheric, a 'vertical city with many functions'.

Completed in April 2012, The Shard officially opened to the public on 5 July 2012.

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