Gallery: London’s New Shard Skyscraper Crowned the Tallest Building in ...

 
Renzo Piano's "The Shard" is finally complete and London is throwing a party to inaugurate this soaring new addition to the city skyline! After three years of construction of the mammoth 1,016 foot "vertical city," Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassem Bin Jabor Al Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Qatar and Prince Andrew Albert Edward, the Duke of York will jointly inaugurate Western Europe's tallest building. The nighttime celebration will include a massive laser show accompanied by two classical pieces played by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and can be viewed live on The Shard's official website.

To the dismay of many critics, The Shard, which is located on the southern bank of the Thames, towers over the iconic London Bridge Quarter. Called by some a monument to greed and a “broken Britain,” the building is almost entirely owned by the state of Qatar. But it is hard to deny that the 72-story mixed-use development, which boasts 360 degree views that extend 40 miles across the city, involves an extraordinary feat of both design and engineering. And – as far as massive skyscrapers go – The Shard is somewhat eco-conscious.

Of the steel that was used in construction, 20% was recycled, while 95% of the waste produced during construction was recycled as well. Also, sky gardens on each floor promote natural ventilation and improve air quality. Whether one loves or hates the newest, tallest addition to London’s skyline is probably a matter of taste. But tonight’s laser show should be cool, so stay tuned for that. It starts at 10:15pm (BST). And finally, those who want to pay £20 or so (that’s the rumor anyhow) to see the legendary views open to the public as of February, 2013 can start booking their tickets online at The View From The Shard starting July 6th at 9am local time.

+ Renzo Piano Building Workshop

+ The Shard

LEAVE A COMMENT

or your inhabitat account below

Let's make sure you're a real person:


4 Comments

  1. munkeyman July 5, 2012 at 11:26 pm

    I am not sure whether I am for or against skyscrapers like this but… given that we have considerable migration to urban centres and need to solve the problem of sustaining an increasing city population, I think this could be the right direction. From an urban planning perspective, it is much more efficient and logical to use well designed structures that use a variety of vertical environmental systems to reduce energy consumption and waste.
    There are many amazing ideas for development, plenty of them appear on this site every week, and if we are not going to slow urban expansion in the near future let’s design vertical cities that save the landscape and promote smart living.
    That being said, I am not privy to the contents of the Shard and how it is being used. I would imagine there is some simple and beneficial features but not as many as we would like to see in such a new building.

  2. zoltanbod July 5, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    If the state of Qatar would invest a million or so into a car designed for the future where cars get 150mpg… such as the Zoleco ….that would make a statement worthy of the history books…this tallest building stuff is just fluff.

  3. Ace July 5, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    By the way, they’re charging £25 for entering it to look at London’s skyline.

  4. Ace July 5, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    O joy. (NOT!) This monstrosity has ruined London’s skyline and is nothing more than the result of some person’s gigantic ego – or maybe many egos who wish to destroy London and assert their power over it. Thus far, no one has signed up to live or work in it, according to the news. So this will be a massive loss for whoever backed it – Qatar, I understand. It would be much better suited to the Dubai desert…

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
What are you looking for? (Solar, HVAC, etc.)
Where are you located?