Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Story of... The Shard

Been across the pond before? Then you’ve probably spotted The Shard in London, England.

The Shard is a supertall glass pyramid skyscraper situated in Southwark, London, designed by Renzo Piano (think the Whitney Museum or the New York Times building in NYC). It’s 87 storeys, 309.6 metres, or 1,016 feet tall, making it the tallest skyscraper in the European Union, and the second tallest free-standing structure in the UK.

Construction began on the building in March 2009 and finished three years later in March 2012. The inauguration of the building took place a few months later where the building was shown off through an awesome light show.  

In the first 71 storeys of the building you’ll find office space and the Shangri-La Hotel, and floor 72 is where ‘The View from The Shard’ observation deck is found as well as a viewing gallery. Everything above that belong to the building’s spire. Fun fact: there are 44 elevators in the building - can you believe it?! 

Here’s something else you probably didn’t know: The Southwark Towers used to stand on the same site that The Shard stands on today. It was a high rise building that was completed in 1976 and demolished in 2008. At that time it was the tallest building in the UK to have ever been demolished.

Now, The Shard stands in that spot and is a real eye-catcher on the London skyline. Cover photo via Tez Goodyer on Flickr