The Gherkin


30 St Mary Axe in London is better known as the Gherkin, one of the city’s most controversial buildings. The 180 metre high tower is the second tallest building in the city of London and was designed by Lord Norman Foster and Ken Shuttleworth and constructed between 2001 and 2004. The building is a technological wonder with some pretty smart designs built in including using about half the energy of a similar size tower. The building uses natural ventilation and extensive use of double glazing which also helps heat the building in winter. The building is primarily office space but the 40th floor has a restaurant with some of London’s most spectacular views. The futuristic design of the building has caused some ho har in the often conservative London town, even good old Prince Charles has had a bit of whinge about the building and some of other futuristic plans for the city, instead preferring London to turn back to the dark ages. The Prince does have a point but as most visitors to London would agree this tower has been carefully planed and the designers and architects with much talent have been able to complement the skyline and surroundings with this building, and in a lot of ways it helps highlight the beautiful churches and historic structures nearby with the contrast.

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