In London, Renzo Piano’s so-called “Shardette” to rise next to so-called “Shard”

Architecture Development International Newsletter Skyscrapers
Fielden House street level. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

Fielden House at street level. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

With his 1,016-foot-tall glassy skyscraper, aptly dubbed “The Shard“, towering above London, and his 17-story office tower, nicknamed the “baby Shard” open nearby, it’s only fitting that Renzo Piano wants to complete the Shardian Trilogy. This week, he came one step closer to accomplishing that with unanimous approval for a 26-story residential tower called “The Shardette.” No, that is not at all the real name. For the record, it is called the Fielden House project.

"The Shardette" and "The Shard." (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

“The Shardette” and “The Shard.” (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

The UK-based Building magazine reported that the project was given the go-ahead after Piano’s team updated its design. According to the publication, planners had flagged issues with cladding materials, rooftop design, public space components, and sightlines to the historic Southwark Cathedral. New renderings show that behind the tower’s glassy, very Piano-style exterior, is masonry cladding which differentiates the structure from the superlative tower next door. At the street level is a public plaza and a two-story glass and steel podium that contains space for retail.

“The proposed new public spaces and landscaping to be delivered by this mixed use development, were strongly supported and praised by the councillors in the meeting,” Renzo Piano Building Workshop said in a statement. “The public realm improvements will have a significant contribution to the area and when completed in 2018, together with the new London Bridge station, will complete the regeneration of London Bridge.”

Construction is slated to start on the project by the end of next year with completion in 2018.

North-south section. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

North-south section. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

Floorplan. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

Floorplan. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop)

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