London through a Shard
19 May, 2009
By Ruth Bloomfield
This is London as you have never seen it before – a glimpse of what visitors to the Shard will see when it opens to the public in 2012.
LBQ, the Qatari and UK consortium behind the London Bridge landmark, has created a series of images giving an early taste of the new views of the capital the Renzo Piano tower will expose from its public viewing galleries.
Work on the Shard began earlier this year. It will contain offices, flats, a hotel, restaurants, with the developer claiming it “will herald a new era in high-rise development for London”.
At 310m and with 100 levels, the Shard will be the tallest building in Western Europe. The viewing galleries at a height of 244m will offer the highest publicly accessible observation point in London.
The viewing galleries are spread over floors 68, 69 and 72 and offer a vantage point at almost twice the height of the London Eye.
A triple-height space on the main viewing level will offer floor to ceiling heights of approximately 8m, while an “indoor/outdoor” experience on the third and highest observation deck will partially expose visitors to the elements.
The galleries will offer 360 degree views across London, with the South Downs
visible on a clear day.
James Sellar, chief executive of Sellar Property Group, which is part of the LBQ consortium, said: “The Shard is set to become one of the most significant additions to the London skyline in decades. From the outset, it has always been my aim to ensure that this wonderful building is open to the public, so that they get to experience the wonder of the Shard at first hand.”