The Shard London Essay

1 Introduction

1.1 Rationale and purpose of the study

The development of tourism industry in London involves the construction of large skyscrapers and tall buildings which change the landscape of the city as well as the image of the city in the tourist eye. At the same time, the construction of tall buildings aims at making London more attractive, but this trend inevitably raises the problem whether tall buildings improve or deteriorate the image of the city and its attractiveness to tourists (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Even if the position of the local community is disregard, the attitude of tourists to tall buildings may also vary consistently but the current construction of tall buildings and plans to increase the number of tall buildings in London to over 200 in the nearest future proves that tall buildings are likely to be attractive for tourists and attract businesses operating in tourism or related industries.

However, taking into account the controversy of the issue, it is important to study in details the impact of tall buildings on the development of tourism in London and the perception of the city by London. At this point, it is possible to refer to the case of the Shard London, which has become the major accomplishment in terms of the construction of tall buildings in London being the second tallest building in the country (CABE, 2012). The construction of the Shard reveals the full extent to which the impact of tall buildings on tourism in London and the perception of the city by tourists is controversial. On the one hand, some tourists admire the Shard as the accomplishment of innovative technologies that open the magnificent panorama of London with the possibility of 360 degrees view of the city. On the other hand, there are tourists, who view the Shard as the complete alien in the architecture and historical heritage environment of London that has virtually ruined the charm of the city, Nevertheless, the construction of the Shard and other tall buildings in the area contributes to the raise of the public debate and draws the public attention to London even more that has a positive impact on the tourism industry anyway, because whatever the debate is, i.e. either positive and negative, it makes people speak and think of London as tourist destination above all (Isyumov, 1993). This is why the revelation of the real impact of tall buildings on the development of tourism industry in London and perception of the city by tourists is extremely important to determine the further construction of tall buildings or change of the city planning to reach possibly more positive effect in the development of the city as the major tourist destination of the UK, while the case study of the Shard London helps to reveal the actual impact of tall buildings on tourism in the city.

1.2 Aim, hypothesis and objective of the study

The aim of the current study is to reveal the impact of tall buildings on the tourism industry and perception of London by tourists. The achievement of this aim implies some other objectives, which help to determine the impact of tall buildings on tourism in London. The city is apparently changing as the Shard and other tall buildings have already emerged and will emerge in the future (Yeang & Powell, 2007). The current study will focus on the revelation of the perception of the Shard by tourists and the context of the approval of the Shard construction in London that will help to find out pros and contras of the construction of tall buildings in the city. In addition, the study will also give insight into the position of London officials and local communities on the construction of tall buildings because eventually it is them to decide whether to construct more tall buildings in London or not.

The hypothesis of the current study is as follows:

The construction of tall buildings in London is highly controversial in terms of the tourists’ attitude to them, because the perception of tall buildings vary from total acceptance to the absolute denial, but tall buildings, in spite of their image either positive or negative, are still a powerful attraction, if they are products of exceptional architectural design as is the case of the Shard London (Abel, 2003).

1.3 Methodology

The methodology of the current study involves three distinct elements. First, the study will include interviews that involve experts operating in the field of architectural design, historical heritage of the UK and tourism. In addition, interviews will also involve tourists, who can express their opinion on the Shard as well as other tall buildings as tourist attractions and their impact on the image of London (Al-Kodmany, 2011). Second, the study will involve questionnaires that will involve the same participants of the study, i.e. experts representing architecture industry, historical heritage organisations, and tourists. Third, the study will involve the case study of the Shard London, which will comprise the milestone of the current research because the Shard is one of the major accomplishments in the field of the construction of tall buildings in London.

1.4 Structure of the paper

  1.4.1 Literature review

This section will involve the overview of current studies concerning the construction of tall buildings in London, related controversies and their impact on the tourism industry of the city. The literature review will help to uncover the background of the problem and to give insights into the further development of London architecture and tourism industry. The literature review will also help to identify key pros and contras of the construction of tall buildings as tourist destinations and powerful attractions in London.

1.4.2 Methodology section

The methodology section will include the detailed description of methods used in the course of the study along with the sample population and methods of its selection for the current study.

   1.4.3 Findings

The findings section will present key findings made in the course of the study that will provide core information on the impact of tall buildings like the Shard London on tourists and their perception of the city as well as on the development of the tourism industry in London in general.

    1.4.4 Discussion of findings

This section will involve the discussion of findings of the study based on their critical evaluation and analysis. In such a way, the discussion of findings will reveal their actual implications for the development of tourism industry in London and the impact of tall buildings on the perception of London by tourists along with the attractiveness of tall buildings for tourists.

1.4.5 Conclusions and recommendations    

The final section of the research will sum up key findings and their implications along with recommendations concerning the further development of the tourism industry in London on the ground of the perception of tall buildings by customers. In other words, recommendations will be elaborated on the ground of the findings concerning the impact of tall buildings in London on the perception of the city by tourists and their tourist attractiveness.

2 Literature Review

2.1 Tall buildings and observatories as attractions for tourists

The construction of tall buildings leads to consistent changes in London architecture and historical heritage. In fact, there is a strong opposition to the construction of tall buildings in London from the part of heritage agencies and public organisations, because they hold the premise that they destroy the historical landscape of the city and threaten to the historical heritage of the city (Yeang & Powell, 2007). In fact, such a view on tall buildings, including the Shard London, is, to a significant extent, just because tall buildings change the city landscape and often they do it irrevocably. London is changing and transforming due to the appearance of large, tall buildings that contrast to historical landmarks and buildings constructed in London centuries ago. In such a way, the historical heritage of London may be under a threat (Yeang & Powell, 2007).

On the other hand, the construction of every tall building is a very complicated process and before the constructing company receives the approval of the authorities, the construction of every particular building is carefully studied that intends to secure the heritage of London (Ali & Moon, 2007). At this point, it is possible to refer to the experience of the Shard London, which confronted substantial challenges until owners of the building received the approval to launch the construction of the building. Therefore, the threat to London’s heritage from the part of tall buildings should not be overestimated, while their attractiveness to international tourists is significant. At any rate, the Shard, for example, was constructed not only for the local population but also and mainly for tourists. The original architectural design and multifunctional features of the city make the building particularly attractive for international tourists.

Tall buildings are multifunctional that makes them particularly attractive for tourists. This is why researchers (Wagner, 2015) often dub them ‘vertical villages’ to emphasize their multifunctional nature. Such multifunctional feature of tall buildings makes them attractive for tourists, because they can find all they need in one place. For example, they can stay in the Shard’s hotel, for example, dine in the restaurant in the same building and even do shopping and return back to their suit without even leaving the building. Tourists attending London as well as any other destination are looking for a comfortable time they are going to spend in their destination. In such a situation, tall buildings provide them with the high level of comfort because they can find whatever they need in one building like the Shard London.

Moreover, tall buildings are perfect observatories for tourists. For example, the Shard opens the 360 degree panorama on London that is apparently the magnificent experience for tourists. Researchers (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012) point to the attractiveness of tall buildings as observatories above all. Tourists use their physical advantage over smaller buildings to have the broader view of the area around them. In case of London, the Shard provides the excellent panorama of the city that makes this building an important observatory for tourists. The same trend is relevant in regard to other tall buildings of the city. Therefore, the construction of tall buildings is evident benefits for tourists, who use them as observatories; while without them tourists would have considerable difficulties to have the panoramic view of almost the entire city within limits of human eyesight.

On the other hand, the multifunctional nature of tall buildings like the Shard London which contains, a hotel, restaurant, apartments, offices and other elements, cannot replace other attractions and landmarks of London (Ali & Moon, 2007). At any rate, tourists are not interested in attending the vertical village solely, instead, they arrive in London to do sightseeing and attend various authentic places which comprise the core of the historical heritage of the city. Therefore, the attractiveness of tall buildings as multifunctional building is limited, but still the interest of tourists to other landmarks of London does not mean that tall buildings cannot attract them.

In fact, researches have coined the term ‘vertical villages’ to define tall buildings. This metaphorical name explains the multidimensional and multifunctional nature of such buildings as the Shard. “Vertical villages” are a new phenomenon for the most part; there are only a few buildings in the world on the same scale as the Shard which include offices, flats and other features” (Wagner, 2015, 11). The novice nature of tall buildings may attract customers, who want to attend the technologically advanced buildings of the superior architectural design as is the case of the Shard. The construction of such vertical villages requires considerable innovations and solutions of numerous challenges which make them tourist attractions on their own. At the same time, researchers (Farrant, 1981) point to the high interest of tourists to everything that is new and unique. In this regard, tall buildings like the Shard match this definition of tourist attractions because they are new and interesting for tourists.

At the same time, new buildings are “clearly capable of operating as island communities, under their own internal logic. While the largest mixed-uses are currently on the same scale as villages or small boroughs, a new generation of super-tall skyscrapers is coming up around the world, many of which will have a variety of functions” (Wagner, 2015, 12). In fact, this trend means that tall buildings emerge as the new trend in the world construction industry. They are attractive because of their mixed-uses which open the way for the commercial success of such buildings, when the construction company or the owner of the building can offer not only offices but also hotel suits, apartments and other facilities within one and the same building.

At the same time, this trend is quite disturbing for London because its tall buildings, like the Shard, face the risk of losing their uniqueness and they may become routine, regular buildings because international tourists can find those buildings in different parts of the world and different cities (Isyumov, 1993). In other words, tall buildings may become common in the future that means that London’s tall buildings will lose their uniqueness and, therefore, attractiveness in London. However, such risk is relatively low because London is attractive as the historical place, where the rich heritage offers international tourists a variety of landmarks and places to visit. This is why tall buildings will still complement other landmarks of London than lose its competitive position in the tourism industry in the future, although it is obvious that the growth of the large number of tall buildings worldwide leads to the stiffening competition. The latter means that tall buildings like the Shard will not be attractions for international tourists on their own but they will become linked to local tourist attractions (Tavernor, 2007). In other words, now tall buildings like the Shard London are attractions for international tourists and they are places which tourists may visit London for. In the future, the Shard London and other tall buildings will need to offer tourists something more to attract them, for example, sightseeing in the nearby area and other products and services.

In such a way, at the moment, the attractiveness of tall buildings in London is twofold: on the one hand, they are popular attractions for international tourists, while, on the other hand, their location in London make them popular places to stay in and do sightseeing or have a particular tourist program due to the rich heritage and places of interest in London and nearby areas (Tavernor, 2007). The attractiveness of tall buildings for international tourists makes them an important part of the tourism strategy of London but their construction is still a questionable issue and the construction of every tall building requires the approval of the authorities as well as support of the local community.

2.2 Criticism of tall buildings as tourist destinations and attractions in London

Declining popularity of tall buildings and observatories because of their intrusion in the historical architecture and landscape of London is one of the major drawbacks of tall buildings like the Shard in terms of their tourism potential. However, the declining popularity is still not evident, but still probable (Tavernor, 2007). The criticism of tall buildings originates from their unsuitable nature in the historical heritage environment of London. Tall buildings differ drastically from traditional buildings of London, especially those constructed in the past century, or in the 19th century, or even earlier. The intrusion of tall buildings into what international tourists have accustomed to believe to be the historical architecture and landscape of London makes tall buildings unattractive for tourists, who believe that they destroy the charm of the city.

At the same time, the declining popularity of tall buildings in London is likely to occur because of the emergence of such buildings worldwide. The competition among tall buildings grows tighter and every new building is more attractive than previous ones. Therefore, tall buildings constructed recently will be in a disadvantageous position compared to their newer rivals, which will be even greater and more impressive than the Shard London and other tall buildings erected in London as well as other cities. As the number of tall buildings grows they lose their attractiveness for tourists because they grow accustomed to them and tourists are not interested in regular, conventional objects or places, which they can see on the daily basis (Tavernor, 2007). Hence, the popularity of the Shard and other tall buildings in London may really decline in the future.

Furthermore, tall buildings in London, including the Shard, are vulnerable to the severe criticism from the part of heritage experts and the public (Tavernor, 2007). Critics point to “a slew of familiar social and environmental evidence as justification ranging from energy inefficiency, poor life expectancy and overheating risk to physical anonymity, economic severance and social polarization” associated with tall buildings which turn into vertical villages (Ijeh, 2014, 2). As the matter of fact, this means that tall buildings have not only positive effects, as their proponents believe, but also the negative one. In other words, many studies (Garreta, 2002) emphasize the positive effect of tall buildings on the local community its socioeconomic development and the quality of life. They view them as vertical villages, which are self-sufficient with their own economy and extensive social life. Such perspective on tall buildings makes them very attractive for investments and developments as elements of the tourism industry or business centres.

However, other studies (Farrant, 1980) prove that they are not as positive and effective as that. On the contrary, they may have a negative impact on the local community and social relations in the area as well as on the local environment. At the same time, the case of the Shard rather proves that tall buildings can be sustainable due to the use of innovations that allow them reducing the energy consumption or use alternative sources of energy instead of conventional ones. In fact, such examples contribute to the emergence of the substantial counter-argument that holds the opposite point of view. Proponents of this opposite point of view hold the premise that tall buildings can offer unparalleled innovation and exhilaration and maintain that it was as much poor maintenance as poor design that was responsible for the high-rise urban ghettos of the latter half of the 20th century (Ijeh, 2014, 3). In this regard, it is not the matter of the size of the building. Instead, it is rather the matter of the construction strategy and concept of the future building envisioned by its owners and construction company. Tall buildings may be as sustainable as small ones, if innovations are applied and if sustainability is a part of the building’s construction strategy. At the same time, tall buildings may be really devastating for the natural environment, if its owners, who decide to construct them, do not care about their sustainability at all. This intrinsic controversy makes the construction of tall buildings in London very controversial, even in light of the tourism industry, which is interested in such buildings as powerful attractions for tourists.

Such controversy is particularly dangerous and challenging in face of the forecast that the number of tall buildings in London will keep growing in the future consistently, since “last year’s revelation by urban think-tank New London Architecture that 230 tall buildings are to be built in the city has rightly provoked a fierce debate over the future of London’s skyline” (Ijeh, 2014, 7). The issue is the irrevocable and drastic change of London’s skyline as tall buildings change it consistently and they still look aliens in the traditional London’s landscape and architecture. The construction of a large number of tall buildings will lead to even more significant change of London’s skyline that it has now. This is why the approval of the construction of those tall buildings should be very careful because the uncontrollable emergence of tall buildings in London may lead to the drastic change of the city’s image, which can transform from the historical centre with rich heritage to the city of modern, high tech, innovative skyscrapers and other tall buildings, which rather create the image of London as the city of the future than the city of the past generations’ heritage. The problem is that now London is at the transitional stage, where the city still attempts to keep the balance between the heritage of the traditional London architecture and the future with ultramodern tall buildings constructed with the use of innovative technologies and personifying outposts of the most advanced technology of the modern civilization.

At the moment, the authorities conduct a very careful policy based on personalized approvals for the construction of every tall building in the city. At the same time, the historical heritage, which is a powerful attraction or tourists, but also social aspects, which also affect the development of tourism in London and attractiveness of the city for international tourists. At this point, it is worth mentioning the fact that “towers [tall buildings] are often privatised vertical cities that essentially operate as safety deposit boxes for foreign investment. Towers can’t replicate the vibrancy of public realm or the liveability of streets. They have more negatives than positives and there are better density models” (Ijeh, 2014, 7). In such a way, tall buildings may have a negative impact on the social life of London and contribute to the widening gap between the rich and the poor. The marginalisation of a large part of Londoners along with the exorbitantly rich Londoners or foreigners living in the city is likely to have the negative impact on the city because of the deterioration of its public image and the emergence of serious social problems, such as growing crime rates, for example. Such issues may discourage international tourists from attending London and, instead, they may prefer other, safer and more stable places in the UK or other countries worldwide, especially taking into consideration the fact that tall buildings will rather make London similar to other cities, like New York, for example, than differentiate it from them. This is why the current development of tall buildings in London is apparently a controversial issues which evokes opposing, if not to say antagonistic views.

2.3 Survey of literature and other studies

The current situation with tall buildings is controversial and existing studies prove this fact. At any rate, some studies (Gehl & Gemzoe, 2000) reveal positive effects of the construction of tall buildings in London as one of the major drivers of the development of tourism in the city. On the other hand, other studies (Yeang & Powell, 2007) reveal the devastating impact of tall buildings in London on heritage or the socioeconomic life of local communities (Tavernor, 2007). In such a situation, the construction of new tall buildings is questionable because it is unclear what long-run impact they will have on London. At the same time, tourism is probably one of the main drivers for the construction of new tall buildings. Even though the local population and heritage agencies often resisted to the construction of tall buildings at first, the appearance of tall buildings, especially such as the Shard, has proved their attractiveness for international tourists. However, some researchers (Tavernor, 2007) point out that the construction of trivial tall buildings will be devastating for London because they will eventually eliminate the uniqueness and authenticity of the city and eventually London may turn into a regular huge city with hundreds of skyscrapers and almost unnoticeable elements of heritage.

At the same time, the distinct feature of current studies dedicated to the problem of the construction of tall buildings in London is the idea of their positive impact on tourism because they are comfortable for residents and tourists, who want to stay in a hotel located in a tall building, where they can find almost everything they need to have at hand in the course of their journey from a laundry to a posh restaurant (Tavernor, 2007). Moreover, tall buildings in London are attractive for tourists because, as a rule, they are exceptional, like the Shard, for example, because they are constructed on the ground of unique plans and architectural design that make them attractive for international tourists. As they are located close to historical places, landmarks and other noteworthy objects of sightseeing in London, such tall buildings increase the interest of tourists in the future and may maintain that interest in the future, at least in a short-run perspective (Yeang & Powell, 2007). However, studies show that long-run effects of tall buildings on the tourism industry of London as well as on the city at large are unclear and uncertain. This is why further studies are needed in this field and the current study also aims at the revelation of specific effects of tall buildings like the Shard on the tourist perception, tourism industry of London and therefore on the further development of the city.

In this regard, the authorities play a particularly important part because it is them, who approve the construction of tall buildings in London or disapprove, but many researchers (Tavernor, 2007) point to the importance of the wider involvement of the public and local community members in the decision making process concerning the construction of tall buildings in London. Local communities should be active agents of the decision making process because the construction of tall buildings may and actually does have a considerable impact on their life and its quality. At the same time, they also rely on the tourism industry and are interested in the development of tourism. Therefore, their involvement in the decision making process will enhance the effectiveness of the decision making process and help to make the construction of new tall buildings based on consensus between all stakeholders.

3 Methodology

3.1 Sample population

The sample population for the current study was selected randomly on the ground of their experience in the field of tourism and tall buildings in London. The sample population involved in the study includes experts, such as architects, heritage specialists, managers of tourism companies, and tourists, who have already experienced attending London and its tall buildings (Garreta, 2002). The involvement of experts is important in terms of the revelation of their position in regard to the development of tall buildings in the context of the tourism industry in London. In this regard, interviews of experts will be conducted from three key perspectives: from the architectural perspective, heritage perspective and tourism perspective.

The architectural perspective will reveal effects of the construction of tall buildings on the general architecture of London and how it can change the landscape of the city as well as the perception of its architecture by the population and tourists (Al-Kodmany, 2011). In addition, architects can give the detailed information on the design of tall buildings constructed in London as well as prospects of the further development of tall buildings in London. The interview will also focus particularly on the case of the Shard London.

The heritage perspective is pivotal for the construction of tall buildings in London. As the construction of tall buildings in London, such as the Shard, traditionally evoked the criticism from the part of the public and heritage specialists, the involvement of the latter in the debate over the impact of tall buildings on London, its landscape and historical heritage context and, therefore, its perception by tourists is important. Experts in the field of heritage can provide their vision of the impact of tall buildings on the historical landscape and heritage of London and whether they have a positive or negative impact on the city in a long-run perspective (Al-Kodmany, 2011). They can also assess the heritage value of tall buildings because the city keeps growing and developing and new buildings will also comprise a part of the heritage one day.

The involvement of managers operating in the tourism industry helps to conduct the assessment of the impact of tall buildings on the attractiveness of London for international tourists. Moreover, they also help to determine whether tall buildings are attractive for tourists or not, as is the case of the Shard, for example, and what specific features make or can make tall buildings attractive for tourists, who want to visit London (Al-Kodmany, 2011). The position of experts from the tourism industry is particularly important in terms of the current study because they will help to explain the impact of tall buildings on tourists’ choices and decisions, their behaviour and further development of the tourism industry in London under the impact of tall buildings. In addition, tourism industry experts can refer to current examples of success or failure related to tall buildings that have been already constructed in London, such as the Shard.

The involvement of tourists into interviews and the current study at large also helps to reveal the impact of tall buildings on the development of tourism in London. More specifically, tourists will reveal their perception of tall buildings and how they have changed their perception of London from the tourist perspective (Al-Kodmany, 2011). Tourists, who have experienced visiting London and attending such tall buildings as the Shard can tell whether their perception has changed or not and whether tall buildings have influenced their overall perception of London or not and what sort of impact it was, positive or negative. Therefore, the involvement of tourists in the current study has proved to be efficient and helped to find out the key effects of the construction of tall buildings on the perception of London by tourist.

3.2 Qualitative methods of study

3.2.1 Interviews

Interviews were destined to the revelation of the personal attitude of participants of the study toward tall building and their impact on London and its tourism industry. At the same time, the study reveals the broader impact of tall buildings than on tourism industry alone because tourism depends on many other factors, such as the attractiveness of tall buildings, their impact on the heritage of London and the possible change of the landscape of the city by international tourists (Al-Kodmany, 2011). The advantage of interviews is the possibility of the revelation of the personal opinion of each expert and tourists because their responses allow tracing the general attitude of experts and tourists toward the construction of tall buildings in London and local tourism industry.

However, interviews have a considerable drawback because they are subjective. In fact, participants involved in the study give their subjective view, which is either grounded on their expertise and experience or not, depending on the background of the particular participant (Al-Kodmany, 2011). Therefore, the data collected from interviews require the critical analysis and detailed evaluation to make the just and adequate conclusions concerning key findings obtain in the result of interviews conducted in the course of the study. Nevertheless, interviews are a valuable source of information about the current development of tall buildings, their impact on the city and the perception of London by tourists.

3.2.2 Questionnaire

Questionnaires are also an effective tool of the qualitative analysis and the study of the problem of the impact of tall buildings on the tourism industry of London and perception of London by tourists. Unlike interviews, questionnaires focus on specific issues, which can help to the key research questions and help to find out the impact of tall buildings on the perception of London and those buildings by tourists (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Questionnaires are also divided by the background of participants of the study. Therefore, there are four questionnaires for four groups of participants of the study, including architects, heritage experts, managers of tourism companies, and tourists. Each questionnaire will contain specific questions with options to respond that will help to make the key findings of the study based on choices and responses made by participants of the study. Questionnaires helps to obtain answers to specific questions and reveal the key trends in the impact of tall buildings on the perception of London by tourists.

3.3 Case study: The Shard of London

The Shard London is the tallest building in London and the second tallest building in the UK. The construction of the Shard evoked the heat public debate as heritage experts opposed to the construction of the building at first but eventually the Shard owners obtained the officials’ approval and launched the construction that was completed in 2012 and the view for the public was opened in 2013. The Shard London became one of the major architectural projects completed in London recently. The Shard was intended to become the ‘vertical city’ that performs mixed functions from the hotel to apartment and offices as well as other facilities that make the entire building a city within its own (The Shard, 2015). In such a way, the Shard London became the challenging and daring project that has apparently changed the landscape of the historical Tower Bridge Quarter. This is why the attitude of the public to the Shard is controversial but still, at the moment, the Shard is one of the major attractions to international tourist, who visit London not only due to its historical heritage, like the Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and other attractions, but also because of the Shard, which, in contrast to historical places and landmarks of London, is the ultimate manifestation of modernity, if not to say post-modernity in the development of the city’s architecture, design and landscape. Therefore, in spite of seeming controversies associated with the construction of the Shard and its impact on the historical heritage and local landscape, the tallest building in London became the major attraction for international tourists and a new, modern landmark of the city that is likely to have a positive impact on the development of tourism, although the perception of the Shard London may also be controversial, depending on the attitude of tourists to the building and its impact on London and its historical and cultural as well as architectural environment.

Pre-construction debate

The construction of the Shard of London raised a severe opposition of the public as well as English Heritage, which issued the note that “We continue to believe that the tower, if it is ever built, would be an inappropriate addition to the skyline in that area” (Weaver, 2003, 5). The early claims of English Heritage were apparently negative for the Shard because representatives of English Heritage believed the building will have the devastating impact on the heritage and the historical landscape of London as well as the perception of the city by tourists as well as the local population. The reason for the strong opposition to the construction of the Shard London from the part of English Heritage was driven mainly by concerns that a modern skyscraper would contrast to the historical architecture of the local area, which dates back to the distant past. The size of the building was another issue because such a huge building would definitely change the landscape of London and could not remain unnoticed as small modern buildings constructed in London without any considerable controversies or public debates. Moreover, English Heritage stood on the ground that the construction of the tall building like the Shard could have a negative impact on nearby buildings to the extent that the construction process could trigger the destruction of nearby buildings, including buildings belonging to the historical heritage of the city.

Nevertheless, the authorities supported the construction of the building in London. Then-Deputy Prime Minister Prescott in the government letter pointed out that the government would only approve skyscrapers of exceptional design. It said: “For a building of this size to be acceptable, the quality of its design is critical. He [Mr Prescott] is satisfied that the proposed tower is of the highest architectural quality” (Weaver, 2003, 9). In such a way, the major argument in favour of the approval of the construction of the Shard was the uniqueness and exceptional design of the new building. In this regard, the Shard was really a non-conventional skyscraper. Developers of the building created the unique design and deployed the most advanced technologies within the new building as well as in the course of its construction. This is why the Shard London was really innovative and had the exceptional architectural design. The uniqueness of the tall building became an important factor contributing to obtaining of the officials’ approval. The officials agreed to approve the construction of the building due to its exceptionality. Otherwise, the Shard could not possibly gain the approval and owners of the building could not launch the construction.

As the project of the Shard London was presented to the officials, they issued the note that they basically support the project and give their approval. To put it more precisely, they supported the construction of the building because along with its exceptional design, the building would not have any harmful effect on the historical environment and heritage of London. In this regard, the officials claimed that “the secretary of state is satisfied that the proposed building will reduce neither the visibility nor the setting of St Paul’s” (Weaver, 2003, 10). As the construction of the building would not have any harmful effect on London’s heritage and local environment, then the officals’ approval was quite reasonable. At this point, they were probably driven by economic concerns as well because the Shard London was a daring project that could become the new major attraction for international tourists in London. In light of the exceptional design and the unparalleled height of the building in London, the Shard became the attractive project for the authorities because it could stimulate the growing interest of international tourists to the city.

At the same time the construction of the Shard was totally supported by the city authorities, namely the mayor of London admitted that “this is a total vindication of the need for a few high-quality tall buildings where they are appropriate and well designed. It will also enhance the London’s skyline and image as a world-city” (Weaver, 2003, 12). This position of the mayor of London proves that the image of the city as the tourist destination and related economic benefits were the major drivers that determined the decision of the authorities to support the construction of the Shard and give their approval to the building’s owners. The authorities believed that the unique project of the Shard London was worthy of London as the ‘world-city’.

In addition, the Shard London was a ‘vertical city’ according to its owners (The Shard, 2015).This means that the Shard performed not only the role of the tourist attraction but also offered mixed uses for both tourists and the local population because the tall building was supposed to become home for a hotel, restaurant, offices, apartments and many other facilities that would comprise the core of the building with the large observatory platform at the top of the building, which would open the 360 degree panorama of London. The multifunctional and mixed use of what should become the tallest building in London was also attractive for the authorities because mixed-uses would contribute to the well-being of the local community as well as tourists. For example, it was apparently better for London to have one tall building with mixed uses instead of multiple small buildings offering the same mixed uses because the tall building would cover smaller area compared to the large number of smaller buildings offering the same uses.

Obviously, the city attempted to get benefits of the construction of the Shard and preserve the historical heritage of London. As Paul Evans, director of regeneration at Southwark where the tower was supposed located, put it: “We will continue to play a role in ensuring that the tower acts as a catalyst to improve the quality of the urban environment across the whole of the London Bridge area” (Weaver, 2003, 13). In such a way, the authorities and English Heritage intended to unite their efforts in their control over the construction of the building to assure that the construction was conducted in accordance with the initial plan and constructors do not violate established and agreed norms and standards that could have threatened to the heritage or the local environment. The tight control was essential to avoid possible problems upon the completion of the construction because it would be definitely too late to change anything in the building that would have been already erected. The government and English Heritage control over the construction of the Shard London was an essential element of the construction to ensure that the construction matches the plan and design of the building approved by the authorities to the full extent.

Construction and functioning

The Shard was conceived as a building with multiple uses: a vertical city where people could live, work and relax. It comprises world-class offices, award-wining restaurants, the 5-star Shangri-La Hotel, exclusive residences and the UK’s highest viewing gallery. The View from The Shard offers 360-degree views. Well-connected and comprehensively serviced by central London’s transport infrastructure, facilities and amenities, The Shard is a timeless reminder of the power of imagination to inspire change (Yeang & Powell, 2007). The observatory potential of the Shard was one of the reasons for the approval of its construction by the authorities. So far, there is virtually no other place, where tourists could have such a magnificent and large scale panorama of London. This is why the construction of the Shard London became an important event in the development of the tourism industry in London because this tall building became one of the best observatories throughout the city with excellent panoramic 360 degrees views.

Furthermore, the building is designed for multiple functions and offers mixed uses. From floors 68-72, and 244m above the city, The View from The Shard offers visitors unobstructed 360-degree, 40-mile views across the London skyline and beyond. After opening in February 2013, it welcomed 1 million guests in its first year (The Shard, 2015). The observatory platform was opened later after the opening of the building because constructors had to complete the work on the platform and top floors of the building, while the rest of the building could function normally and could accept guests and visitors. At this point, the completion of the Shard London was closely related to the Olympic Games of 2012 that took place in London because the new tall building could attract the attention of visitors and tourists.

The Shard’s exclusive residential apartments, situated on floors 53-65, are the highest in the UK and offer the best view of the capital from the most prestigious address in London (The Shard, 2015). The exclusive residential apartments were destined for the local population as well as for international buyers and did not contribute directly to the development of tourism. However, many buyers of those departments are not the UK citizens. This is why the ownership of those apartments in the Shard London encourages them to visit the capital of the UK on the regular basis and spend their time in their apartments in the heart of the city.

The UK’s first Shangri-La hotel boasts 200 luxuriously appointed rooms occupying floors 34-52, along with breathtaking views and the hotel’s signature 5-star service. Its wide array of amenities includes a gourmet delicatessen, international restaurant, iconic bar and premium event spaces and services. Recreation facilities include a gym and infinity pool featuring panoramic views of the London skyline (The Shard, 2015). The presence of recreation facilities is definitely beneficial for the Shard as the tourist attraction but the presence of such facilities is just another manifestation of mixed uses of the building. The diverse facilities of the Shard reveal its considerable potential in terms of the tourism development since the building can actually offer multiple services and facilities, which may be interesting for tourists or which may be used by tour operators as a part of their tours offered to their customers.

The Shard is home to some of London’s finest restaurants: Aqua Shard, which serves innovative contemporary British cuisine in its restaurant, private dining rooms and spectacular three-storey high atrium bar on the 31st floor; Oblix, which brings sophisticated, urban, casual dining, along with a dynamic cocktail bar, to the 32nd floor; Hutong, which treats guests to the fascinating and diverse cuisines of Northern China on level 33; and the Shangri-La Hotel’s restaurants LANG, offering artisan delicacies and TING, serving modern European cuisine with an Asian twist (The Shard, 2015). The hotel’s GONG cocktail and vintage champagne bar, meanwhile, is the perfect place for sunset cocktails and late-night drinks against the backdrop of the London skyline.

Studies (Yeang & Powell, 2007) show that inspiring workplaces produce happier and more productive workforces. The offices at The Shard not only provide the most incredible views across the capital, but also provide space, light and air, with naturally ventilated winter gardens on each floor. The London Bridge Quarter development is creating a mixed-use vertical town, and a unique community in which to work, which will enhance occupiers’ creativity, efficiency and productivity (The Shard, 2015). The location of the Shard is beneficial for the local area, community as well as tourists because within the limited space the tall building offers the wide variety of services, facilities and products available to tourists as well as local community members. As a result, the Shard London increases the tourism capacity of London due to the increased offer of various services within the limited area available for the construction.

Shard also has a volley of sustainability features which have enabled it to use 30% less energy than a conventionally designed skyscraper of the same height. This includes a CHP unit, a ventilated triple-skin facade, low-ion glazing with low emissivity coating and an integrated energy system that maximises energy efficiency and by balancing energy demand in accordance with where it is needed at various times of the day (Ijeh, 2014, 7). The aforementioned features make the Shard London environment friendly. In contrast to many other skyscrapers, which are justly viewed as dangerous for the environment and having the devastating impact on the environment, the Shard has the minimal impact on the environment. At this point, it is worth mentioning the fact that even the construction of the building involved the use of sustainable methods and materials (Tavernor, 2007). In such a way, owners of the tall building in the heart of London attempted to ensure the public and the local community that their building will not bear any threats to them and the natural environment. Instead, the Shard London became the avant-gardist building that used the advanced, sustainable technologies and materials and offered diverse environment friendly solutions, many of which are unique and can be found in this building only. Taking into consideration the size of the building, making it sustainable was quite a challenging task (Yeang & Powell, 2007).

The sustainability is one of the strongest features of the Shard London which has brought the tall building the support of the local community and which currently attracts many tourists, especially those concerned with their environmental footprint and the prevention of the negative impact of human activities on the environment. Owners of the building attempted to make it exemplary for other tall buildings, architects, engineers and designers. They focused on sustainability to show that tall buildings are not necessarily dangerous for the environment. On the contrary, they used innovative technologies to show that the Shard London can minimize the footprint of humans on their environment opening the new way for the construction of truly sustainable tall buildings in London as well as other cities (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). However, the use of sustainable technologies and solutions increased costs of the project, which seem to be secondary in light of grandiosity of the Shard owners’ plans and prospects for the building to become one of the new and major attractions of London.

4 Findings

4.1 The role of tall buildings and observatories in the development of tourism in London

Tall buildings may have a considerable potential in terms of the development of tourism but the context, where tall buildings are erected, and their environment also have a considerable impact on the contribution of those building to the growth of the tourism industry in the particular area. In this regard, it is worth mentioning the fact that some cities use tall buildings as the major attractions for tourists. At this point, it is possible to refer to the experience of the UAE, where the construction of unparalleled, modern, high tech and innovative buildings became one of the major attractions for tourists (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). However, tall buildings may raise considerable public debates and opposition to their construction because of their possible negative impact on the historical heritage as is the case of London and other major cities of the UK, where historical monuments and landmarks may be under a threat in case of construction of tall buildings without any regulations from the part of local communities and authorities. This is why the construction of tall buildings in London requires the approval of the construction by the authorities to ensure that the new tall building will not have a devastating impact on the historical heritage, authentic atmosphere of the particular community and the life of the local population.

On the other hand, tall buildings have a considerable potential in terms of the development of tourism industry even in London. However, tall buildings should be exceptional in terms of its design to make a true attraction for international tourists as is the case of the Shard London, for example (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Otherwise, the authorities are unlikely to give their consent to approve the construction of such tall buildings. The uniqueness of design is essential to attract tourists because conventional tall buildings will just turn London into the average city with a large number of skyscrapers. Instead, unique projects, like the Shard, can shape the new face of London as the world city, where the history combines with modernity.

Sustainability is another issue, which is particularly important for the construction of new tall buildings as attractions for tourists. The case of the Shard London shows how innovations can make tall buildings sustainable in terms of their energy efficiency and their minimal impact on the environment (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012).

Mixed use is another distinct feature of modern tall buildings constructed in London, such as the Shard. Today, international tourists are attracted by multiple functions and mixed uses of tall buildings. For example, the Shard London is attractive for tourists due to mixed uses, including hotel, restaurant, apartments, offices and even observatory platform along with other facilities that may be used for other purposes. In such a way, tall buildings become vertical towns/villages or as some researchers call them vertical cities (Tavernor, 2007). Tourists enjoy finding everything they need at hand in the tall building, where they can stay, dine, observe the city, do shopping and perform other activities.

In addition, tall buildings, even if they are located in historical areas of London, like the Shard, are still just places to visit, to see or just to stay in, but there are plenty of other historical and cultural landmarks, which tourists like to see in London. In such a situation, tall buildings perform the role of complementary attractions as well as utility facilities, where tourists can just perform routine activities, like shopping, observation or staying in a hotel (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). This is why the historical heritage and the unique ambiance of London are still the major attractions for international tourists, whereas tall buildings rather support that ambiance and become extra attractions for tourists. In such a situation, it is important to keep balance between the construction of tall buildings and perseveration of the historical heritage of London and its unique ambiance.

4.2 The public attitude to tall buildings and observatories in the past and tourism industry

In the past, the public had rather negative attitude to tall buildings in London because they were perceived as a threat to the historical heritage and unique ambiance of the city. The local population wanted to preserve London as it was but the progress was unstoppable and tall buildings have started to appear, although their construction required the approval of the authorities. The public negative attitude to tall buildings was driven by their inappropriateness in the architectural and historical heritage context of the city. However, they also lacked uniqueness and exceptionality in their design and function. This is why the population of London as well as many tourists believed them to be inappropriate for London and unworthy of construction (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Tall buildings were rather associated with ugliness than with innovation and exclusiveness. Such attitude has started to change, when first really unique and innovative tall buildings have started to appear in London, as was the case of the Shard, for example. However, the past opposition to the construction of tall buildings was very strong and, at the moment, the construction of new tall buildings is still quite complicated and challenging, but possible as the case of the Shard has proved.

4.3 The current situation concerning of tall buildings and observatories as tourist attractions in London now

The current situation concerning the construction of tall buildings is quite controversial. On the one hand, there is the high demand among companies that are willing to construct tall buildings, whereas, on the other hand, there is a complex procedure of the construction approval by the authorities (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). In addition, the public opinion and the position of English heritage also play an important part in the course of the decision making concerning the construction of tall buildings.

Nevertheless, tall buildings have a considerable tourism potential as tourist attractions and observatories. For example, the construction of the Shard London has proved that tall buildings may be sustainable. Moreover, the Shard has proved that tall buildings can be exceptional tourist attractions due to its facilities as well as extraordinary design and structure (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). At the same time, the Shard just offers the excellent 360 degree panorama of London that no other building in the city can offer to tourists. This is why the Shard has opened new perspectives for tall buildings in London, which may have a positive impact on tourism and the attraction of international tourists to the city. In such a way, the city can benefit from the further construction of tall buildings.

However, at the moment, there are over 200 tall buildings plans that are applied to the authorities for approval that is apparently the excessively huge number of tall buildings to construct. In such a situation, the authorities should interact closely with the local community as well as with English Heritage to ensure that the construction of new buildings will be safe for the heritage and beneficial for local communities. What is more, the essence of the government policy concerning the approval of the construction of tall buildings is the exceptionality of their design and function. Therefore, London will not likely to become the place for conventional skyscrapers (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). On the contrary, the city is likely to become home for exceptional tall buildings, with each building being unique and, therefore, attractive for tourists. Therefore, now the construction of tall buildings keeps progressing with the evident focus on the construction of buildings as attractions for tourists but with concerns of interests of the local community and English heritage.

5 Discussion of Findings

5.1 The role of tall buildings and observatories in the development of tourism

The findings of the study reveal that tall buildings contribute to the development of the tourism industry in London. In this respect, the case of the Shard London is particularly noteworthy because the Shard has features of the major attraction for tourists, such as mixed uses, great observatories, hotel and other facilities which make the tall building a vertical town, where tourists can find everything they need (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). The attractiveness of the tall building for tourism is one of the major reasons for their approval issued by the authorities to allow owners of tall buildings to construct them according to approved plans.

At this point, it is worth mentioning that the construction of tall buildings in London is a complex process, which is closely intertwined with interests of the local community, English heritage, and tourism opportunities offered by new tall buildings (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). In fact, the authorities admit the construction of tall buildings, if they have the exceptional design. The reason for such policy is the attractiveness of tall buildings with exceptional design for tourists, because tourists cannot be attracted by conventional skyscrapers, but they are attracted by tall buildings like the Shard London, since there are no other buildings in the world which are absolutely identical to the Shard. The uniqueness of tall buildings makes them attractive for tourists, while the development of tourism is beneficial for London, because now tourism comprises the lion share of the economy of the city.

Furthermore, tourism plays an important part in the economic development of London but heritage is also pivotal for the maintenance of the high interest of international tourists to the city. In this regard, tall buildings may be a threat to the development of tourism in London, if they change the landscape and skyline of the city consistently and destroy the historical heritage of the city (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). In such a context, tall buildings have a negative impact on the development of the city. In this regard, the approval of the construction of tall buildings in London turns out to be an essential and important procedure that can prevent the destruction of the historical heritage of London but the problem is the risk of the authorities giving in to profits from the development of the tourism industry in London stimulated by tall buildings instead of the maintenance of strict policies restricting the construction of tall buildings in the city.

5.2 Reasons of the popularity of tall buildings and observatories

Mixed uses

Exceptional design

Historical and cultural environment

Tall buildings are the best to perform functions of observatories. For example, the Shard opens the 360 degree panoramic view of London from its observatory platform at the top of the building (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012).

The high level of comfort and availability of well-developed infrastructure and transportation are also very important for tourists because they are naturally looking for places, where they can get to and move wherever they want to easily along with the use of modern telecommunication system, while they are in those places, which they visit (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012).

5.3 Reasons of the possible decline of tall buildings and observatories as tourist attractions in London now

At the same time, the findings of the current study reveal the fact that the future of tall buildings as the major tourist attraction may decline as well as the further construction of such buildings may be under a question. At the moment, there are several reasons for such a situation that actually threatens to the further development of tall buildings and observatories as tourist attractions in London. In this regard, one of the most significant threats is the threat to heritage of the capital of the UK (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Heritage of London comprises the core of its attractiveness for international tourists. Historical landmarks, monuments and buildings as well as just noteworthy historical places attract tourists from all over the world. In fact, heritage comprises an important part of the public image of the city as the major tourist destination in the world. The loss of English heritage will threaten to the tourist attractiveness of London. As a result, the city may lose the flow of tourists attracted by heritage of London and its unique ambiance. This is why tall buildings may become the threat to heritage and the tourism industry in London because they change landscape and may affect landmarks and heritage of the city.

In this regard, the conventionality of tall buildings may become another reason for their decline as the tourist attraction in London (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). This issue is closely intertwined with the threat to historical heritage of the city because conventionality means that tall buildings will be constructed on the ground of a standard plan, which implies the construction of an ordinary skyscraper just like many others in other cities worldwide. Such conventionality will be disastrous for tall buildings in London and destroy historical heritage of the city.

The public pressure may become the most important factor that can put the end to the construction of tall buildings and their tourist potential. To put it more precisely, the public opinion in the UK and London determines, to a significant extent, policies conducted by the authorities (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). For example, in the past the public was against the construction of tall buildings and they have not been constructed, until the authorities, owners of tall building and local communities have come to agreement and granted owners of tall building with the authority’s approval to construct tall buildings. However, if the public opposes to the construction of tall buildings, the authorities will be virtually unable to approve such construction, unless there are some absolutely exceptional cases.

The tough position of English Heritage and scientists, which can raise the public opinion against tall buildings and their construction in London, may be another reason for the decline of tall buildings in London as tourist attractions. In fact, the public relies heavily on the expert opinion (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). If scientists start insisting on the destructive impact of tall buildings on English heritage the public tends to take the side of scientists and force policy makers to change policies concerning the construction of tall buildings. As a result, the public may force the authorities to stop the further construction of tall buildings and slow down or stop their development as a part of the tourism industry of London. On the other hand, the authorities as well as companies willing to construct tall buildings in London can dissuade the public and gain their support that will open the way for the further construction of tall buildings in the city. In this regard, the authorities and owners of tall buildings like the Shard London have plenty of arguments in favour of their construction as important drivers of the tourism industry, which, in its turn, plays the key part in the economy of the city and, therefore, well-being of the population of the city.

5.4 The future of tall buildings and observatories in tourism industry in London

In the future, tall buildings in London are likely to be constructed in a larger amount compared to present days. The current success of the Shard London opens wide opportunities for the development of the tourism industry of the city. Taking into consideration the contribution of the tourism industry to the economy of London, the authorities of the city as well as local communities are likely to support the construction of tall buildings as long as they contribute to the growth of the tourism industry and attraction of international tourists to London (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Tall buildings may be exclusive and monumental in a way that makes them powerful attractions for tourists. In addition, their location amidst the historical heritage of the city makes them even more attractive for tourists. This is why tall buildings have a considerable potential in terms of the economic development of London through the progress of tourism industry, but such buildings cannot be conventional. Instead, they should be different from conventional skyscraper.

However, the construction of tall buildings in London will focus on the exclusive design, innovations and sustainability. This means that tall buildings should have the exclusive design to make them attractive for tourists as places worth visiting. The original, exclusive design of the Shard London attracts many tourists, who just want to see that monumental building (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). This is why the exceptional design is an important factor of the tourist success of the building in London. Moreover, it is one of the major conditions of obtaining the approval for the construction from the local authorities.

Innovations are also pivotal for the further development of tall buildings in London and they will virtually be unable to compete in the future, if they do not use innovative technologies and solutions. Innovations make tall buildings more comfortable and impressing for tourists (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012).  Therefore, they become more attractive for tourists. Otherwise, tall buildings without innovations face the risk of become the average skyscrapers that will not match the skyline of London and the strategy of its architectural and economic development.

Finally, sustainability is the key to the future success of tall buildings and the essential element of such buildings in the future in London. Sustainability minimizes negative effects of tall buildings on the environment, which is one of the major argument against the construction of tall buildings in the city (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Traditionally, opponents of tall buildings insisted that they are harmful for the environment. However, the case of the Shard London proves that tall buildings can be sustainable. In the future, sustainability will be essential for tall buildings to obtain the public support and the authorities’ approval because local communities and the government grow concerned with the environmental impact of new buildings, especially tall one.

6 Conclusions and Recommendations

6.1 Conclusions

Thus, tall buildings evoke controversial public attitudes because of their possible negative impact on the environment and historical heritage of London. However, the construction of tall buildings carries on upon the approval of the authorities. The approval means that tall buildings do not threaten to historical heritage of the city and match the landscape and overall image of London as the world city. The case of the Shard London is exemplary so far because the Shard has managed to become one of the major tourist attractions in London due to the exceptional design, innovations, sustainability and mixed uses of the building along with the perfect and exclusive observatory potential (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). New tall buildings are likely to follow the lead of the Shard to gain the approval of the authority and the public support. However, the further development of tall buildings will depend on the development of the tourism industry or, to put it more precisely, on the impact of tall buildings on the tourism industry. If they have a positive impact on tourism in London as the Shard does, they are likely to obtain the approval for the construction. Otherwise, projects of tall buildings will not be approved.

6.2 Recommendations

Tall buildings have a considerable potential in regard to the tourism industry of London but to realize that potential they need to match some basic recommendations. First, they should focus on the sustainable development to minimize their negative impact on the environment and the quality of life of local communities. Second, tall buildings should have the exceptional design to be attractive for international tourists as well as the local population (Beadman, Pennington, & Sharratt, 2012). Third, tall buildings should offer mixed uses that will make them not only attractive for tourists but also make them more attractive for investors due to the higher benefits and return on investments, which investors may gain from those buildings.

 

7 Bibliography

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Al-Kodmany, K. (2011). Tall buildings, design, and technology: Visions for the twenty-first century city. J. Urban Technol., 18, 113–138.

Abel, C. (2003) ‘Sky High’, Royal Academy of Arts, London Behling, Sophia & Stefan (2000) an (2000) ‘Solar Power- The Evolution of Sustainable Architecture’ , Prestel Vergal, London

Beadman D., Pennington M. and Sharratt M. (2012) Pile test at The Shard London Bridge, Ground Engineering, pp. 24–29

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CABE and English Her ABE and English Heritage, (2003) ‘Guidance on Tall Buildings’, Jointly published by Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment and English Heritage, London

CABE and English Her ABE and English Heritage, (2001) ‘Building in Context: New development in Historic Areas’, Jointly published by Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment and English Heritage, London DETR,

CABE (2000) ‘ ABE By Design: Urban design in the planning system: toward better practice’,Thomas Telford Publishing, London. DTLR,

CABE (2001) ‘ ABE By Design: Better Places to Live; A Companion Guide to PPG3’, Thomas Telford Publishing, London.

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Ijeh, I. (2014). Can tall buildings ever be sustainable, BDOnline. Retrieved from http://www.bdonline.co.uk/can-tall-buildings-ever-be-sustainable?/5074042.article

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8 Appendices

Shard Key Facts

  • The Shard is 309.6 metres, or 1,016 feet, high – almost a third of a kilometre.
  • It is 95 storeys tall, with level 72 the highest habitable floor.
  • The building is served by 44 lifts, some of which are double-decker.
  • Its exterior is covered by 11,000 glass panels – equivalent in area to eight football pitches or two and a half Trafalgar Squares.
  • The length of wiring in the building, 320km or 200 miles, would stretch from London to Paris.
  • At the busiest point during its construction, 1,450 workers from 60 countries were helping to build The Shard.
  • Lifts in The Shard travel at speeds of up to 6 metres a second.
  • A fox was found on the 72nd floor towards the end of construction. The fox, which was nicknamed Romeo by staff, is believed to have survived on food left by construction workers.
  • The Shard is jointly owned by The State of Qatar and Sellar Property Group.

Source: The Shard. (2015). The Official Website. Retrieved from http://www.the-shard.com/shard/a-vertical-city/

 

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