Since London shook off its stuffy, conservative hostility towards tall buildings at the dawn of the new millennium, a change in attitudes initiated by the arrival Norman Foster’s curvaceous 30 St Mary Axe (The Gherkin) skyscraper in the City of London. The public and many of the cities decision makers rapidly, if somewhat reluctantly, embraced taller structures and designated special areas for their cultivation. The intention being that they wont impinge on valued historic buildings and the demarcated sight-lines that guard them. In an attempt to document these new vertical structures the Independent centre for London’s built environment, New London Architecture (NLA), has put together a yearly publication which provides a ‘comprehensive analysis of all tall buildings, over 20 storeys, which are proposed, in planning or under construction in London.’
If you are to pick up a copy of the 2019 London Tall Buildings Survey and make it to page 103 you will glimpse a photograph I took of Kohn Pedersen Fox Architect’s 52 Lime Street Building (The Scalpel), a 42 Storey, 190 meter tall, skyscraper located in the City of London just a stones throw from the The Gherkin skyscraper where all this reverence for height began. The publication is available to download for free, or you can pick up a physical copy by dropping into the The Building Centre near Goodge Street station in central London.