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London Build

17 Jul 2019

How London would look if rejected skyscrapers were given the green light

How London would look if rejected skyscrapers were given the green light

Plans for a new skyscraper nicknamed a 'giant sperm' were thrown out last night, meaning we will never get the chance to climb the Tulip Tower (as it was more officially known).

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan took the decision on the grounds it was 'unwelcoming' and brought limited public benefit. He said it would damage the city skyline and affect views towards the Tower of London. It got us thinking about how the capital would look if this building had been given permission, along with all the other skyscrapers thrown out at the planning stage. Take a look at the image above to see how the capital could have looked very different, with some of the buildings reaching higher than the Shard. Here are some of the buildings that never got to see a construction site.

Tulip Tower

The most recent on the reject pile, the Tulip'would have been the second tallest building in western Europe, second only to the Shard at 310 metres. The building designed by Foster + Partners was described as 'truly unique' by the City of London Corporation and was expected to attract 1.2 million people every year after opening in 2025 as planned. The 'bud' at the top would have included 12 storeys including a viewing platform with rotating pods, a bar, a restaurant and an entire floor for education facilities.

The 'Paddington Pole'

The 72-floor residential skyscraper would have been built next to Paddington Station. At 254 metres, it would have dwarfed nearby buildings if Renzo Piano, the architect, and Irvine Sellar, the property developer, had gone ahead. They withdrew the planning application after objections it would damage the skyline.'The Paddington 'Pole' was then amended to with plans successfully submitted to become a Paddington Cube of offices.

Citygate Ecotower

At 485 metres, this tower would have been significantly taller than the Shard, which is 310 metres. It was rejected in 2007. Developers claimed it would be the most environmentally friendly skyscraper on either, with photo-voltaic panels on the cladding and natural stack effect ventilation.

Green Bird

Standing at 442m and 83 floors, the Green Bird may not have been green or a bird, but it would have been a huge and colourful addition to the London skyline. Unfortunately, it suffered from comparisons to the kind of thing you might find at the back of someone's bedside drawer. Sorry, Future Systems.

Crystal Palace Tower

The idea for this was to convert Crystal Palace exhibition centre into a skyscraper, after the Great Exhibtion of 1851. At 304 metres tall, it would have been almost as tall as the Shard ' in 1861. Unfortunately, it didn't go ahead.

Watkin's Tower

The 'Great Tower of London' was intended to be taller than the Eiffel Tower, to one up Paris. It was partially completed on the site of where Wembley Park is now. However, it was never finished and was demolished in 1907.

Gagarin Tower'

The rocket-shaped tower would have been 110 metres tall, built in Southwark. However, it was refused planning permission as the council felt it would look too 'alien' for the borough. A Southwark Council document said: 'The location is not appropriate for a tall building, and at 30 storeys the 'rocket' tower would stand as an isolated and incongruous feature in the townscape, who design references and literal interpretation are completely alien to Southwark. 'This would cause significant harm not just to the local area, but to the skyline of London as a whole.'

Source: Metro

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