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Rafael Viñoly’s 20 Fenchurch Street, nicknamed the Walkie-Talkie, was completed this year. Branded “brutally dominant” by English Heritage, it will house Markel International, Tokio Marine Kiln and brokers RSA, among others. The building will be topped on the 37th storey by London’s highest park, featuring botanical gardens, private dining and a 360-degree panorama.
Nearby in the City is Richard Rogers’ Leadenhall Building, or the “Cheesegrater”, which was formally completed in June. Some 224.5m high, it counts Aon, Amlin and Servcorp as tenants. Unusually for a tall building, it has no central core, with an external mega-frame providing lateral stability. A sneak preview will be possible as part of Open House London (September 20-21, londonopenhouse.org).
Across the river in Vauxhall, the New Bondway building, dubbed the Jenga Tower, has just been approved by Lambeth Council. Over the next five years developers will build two new towers, with 450 apartments, a gym, cinema and office space. Ninety of the apartments will be affordable housing units.
To the south in Croydon, Saffron Square is being developed by Berkeley Homes. Construction of the crimson and purple-splashed tower began three years late, in 2011, and is expected to finish in 2016. The development will include 3,000 sq m of retail floorspace, 800 new apartments, and retail outlets.
In Hackney, Karakusevic Carson Architects and David Chipperfield Architects have been granted planning permission for Colville Estate Towers, two residential buildings that will reach 16 and 20 storeys respectively. The development is part of Hackney Council’s regeneration strategy for the area. David Chipperfield has also been appointed to redesign Oxford Street department store Selfridges’ east side, creating a new entrance and a 4,600 sq m accessories department.
25 Churchill Place in Canary Wharf is expected to be one of the most energy-efficient office buildings in the district. Featuring energy-storing lifts, the building stands 130m tall and will house EY, the consultancy, from 2015.
In King’s Cross, the Gasholder No. 8 project is redeveloping the 160-year-old gasholders that border Regent’s Canal. Carefully dismantled and refurbished in Yorkshire, Gasholder No. 8 has now been re-erected on the north side of the canal, overlooking Camley Street Natural Park and St Pancras Basin. By day a park space, the gasholder will be used for events at night.
Next spring, public fundraising starts for the Garden Bridge, an ambitious project led by designer Thomas Heatherwick to build a new crossing over the Thames from the South Bank to Temple station, covered in lush green plantings.
Slideshow photographs: Bloomberg; John Sturrock; Berkeley Homes PLC