The Info List - The Shard

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THE SHARD, also referred to as the SHARD OF GLASS, SHARD LONDON BRIDGE and formerly LONDON BRIDGE TOWER, is a 95-storey skyscraper in Southwark
, London
, that forms part of the London
Bridge Quarter development. Standing 309.7 metres (1,016 ft) high, the Shard is the tallest building in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
, the fourth-tallest building in Europe and the 111th-tallest building in the world . It is also the second-tallest free-standing structure in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
, after the concrete tower at the Emley Moor transmitting station .

The Shard's construction began in March 2009; it was topped out on 30 March 2012 and inaugurated on 6 July 2012. Practical completion was achieved in November 2012. The tower's privately operated observation deck, The View from The Shard , was opened to the public on 1 February 2013. The glass-clad pyramidal tower has 72 habitable floors, with a viewing gallery and open-air observation deck on the 72nd floor, at a height of 244.3 metres (802 ft). It was designed by the Italian architect Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano
and replaced Southwark
Towers , a 24-storey office block built on the site in 1975. The Shard
The Shard
was developed by Sellar Property Group on behalf of LBQ Ltd and is jointly owned by Sellar Property (5%) and the State of Qatar
State of Qatar


* 1 Background

* 1.1 Planning * 1.2 Funding

* 2 Architecture

* 2.1 Layout

* 3 Construction

* 3.1 Gallery

* 4 Height * 5 Tenants * 6 Urban exploration, BASE jumping and climbing * 7 In popular culture

* 8 See also

* 8.1 Similar structures

* 9 Footnotes * 10 References * 11 External links



In 1998, London-based entrepreneur Irvine Sellar and his then-partners decided to redevelop the 1970s-era Southwark
Towers following a UK government white paper encouraging the development of tall buildings at major transport hubs. Sellar flew to Berlin
in the spring of 2000 to meet the Italian architect Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano
for lunch. According to Sellar, Piano spoke of his contempt for conventional tall buildings during the meal, before flipping over the restaurant's menu and sketching a spire-like sculpture emerging from the River Thames
River Thames

In July 2002, the then-Deputy Prime Minister , John Prescott
John Prescott
, ordered a planning inquiry after the development plans for the Shard were opposed by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment and several heritage bodies, including the Royal Parks Foundation and English Heritage
English Heritage
. The inquiry took place in April and May 2003, and on 19 November 2003, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister announced that planning consent had been approved. The government stated that:

Mr Prescott would only approve skyscrapers of exceptional design. For a building of this size to be acceptable, the quality of its design is critical. He is satisfied that the proposed tower is of the highest architectural quality. The Southwark
Towers office block, which was demolished in 2008 to make way for The Shard
The Shard

Sellar and his original partners CLS Holdings plc and CN Ltd (acting for the Halabi Family Trust ) secured an interim funding package of £196 million in September 2006 from the Nationwide Building Society and Kaupthing Singer "> Audio description of the building by Steven Berkoff Internal structure of the Shard's spire and radiator floors, seen from the 72nd-floor observatory

Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano
, the project's architect, designed the Shard as a spire-like sculpture emerging from the River Thames
River Thames
. He was inspired by the railway lines next to the site, the London
spires depicted by the 18th-century Venetian painter Canaletto
, and the masts of sailing ships. Piano's design met criticism from English Heritage, who claimed the building would be "a shard of glass through the heart of historic London", giving the building its name, the Shard. Piano considered the slender, spire-like form of the tower a positive addition to the London
skyline, recalling the church steeples featured in historic engravings of the city, and believed that its presence would be far more delicate than opponents of the project alleged. He proposed a sophisticated use of glazing , with expressive façades of angled glass panes intended to reflect sunlight and the sky above, so that the appearance of the building will change according to the weather and seasons. The building features 11,000 panes of glass, with a total surface area of 56,000 square metres (600,000 sq ft).

The Shard
The Shard
was designed with energy efficiency in mind. It is fitted with a combined heat and power (CHP) plant, operating on natural gas from the National Grid . Fuel is efficiently converted to electricity and heat is recovered from the engine to provide hot water for the building.

Following the destruction of New York 's World Trade Center (WTC) in the terror attacks of 11 September 2001 , architects and structural engineers worldwide began re-evaluating the design of tall structures. The Shard's early conceptual designs were among the first in the UK to be amended following the publication of the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) report into the collapse of the WTC. The building is designed to maintain its stability under very onerous conditions, with its post-tensioned concrete and composite floors, load-bearing pillars and tapering shape giving it a sway tolerance of 400 millimetres (16 in).

In 2014, The Shard
The Shard
claimed first place at the Emporis
Skyscraper Awards, recognising buildings over 100 m (328 ft) completed in the previous twelve months. The Emporis
judges hailed the building as "a skyscraper that is recognized immediately and which is already considered London's new emblem".





68–72 758 m2 (8,159 sq ft) The View from The Shard (observatory)

53–65 5,772 m2 (62,129 sq ft) Residences


Shangri-La Hotel

31–33 5,945 m2 (63,991 sq ft) Restaurants (Hutong, Oblix and Aqua Shard)


South Hook Gas


Arma Partners

26 52,322 m2 (563,189 sq ft) New State Corporation


The Office Group
The Office Group


Foresight Group

19–22 52,322 m2 (563,189 sq ft) Offices




Warwick Business School and Foresight


Al Jazeera English
Al Jazeera English
and Al Jazeera UK London
studio and offices


Mathys & Squire


Duff "> The Shard
The Shard
pictured from Great Tower Street in April 2012

In February 2009, a mobile crane and a small piling rig arrived on site. In early March 2009, the crane began putting steel beams into the ground, as part of preparations for the core of the building. Full construction began on 16 March 2009. Demolition work on New London Bridge House started in May 2009, as part of the concurrent London Bridge Place project. The first steelwork went into the Shard's piles on 28 April. Five cranes were used to build the Shard, with four of them 'jumping' with the tower as it rose. Crane 1 was erected in September 2009 and Crane 2 was erected at the beginning of October. By 20 October 2009, steel beams began appearing on site, with concrete being poured at the northern part of the site, ready for Crane 3.

By March 2010, the concrete core was rising steadily at about 3 metres (9.8 ft) a day. After a pause in March–April 2010, it continued rising, reaching the 33rd floor in mid-June, almost level with the top of Guy\'s Hospital , which stands at 143 metres (469 ft). On 27 July 2010, the core stopped rising, having reached the 38th floor, and was reconfigured for further construction. By mid-November 2010, the core had reached the 68th floor, with the tower's steel reaching the 40th floor and glass cladding enveloping a third of the building. In late November, the core's height exceeded 235 metres (771 ft), ending One Canada Square
One Canada Square
's 18-year reign as Britain's tallest building.

The Shard's concrete core topped out at the 72nd floor in early 2011, standing at 245 metres (804 ft). The early part of January 2011 saw the installation of hydraulic screens, which were used to form the concrete floors of the hotel and apartment section of the tower, and rose with the floors up to the 69th floor. On 25 January 2011, the concrete pumps began pouring the first concrete floor at the 41st floor. By the end of February 2011, concrete flooring had risen to the 46th floor, with a new floor being poured on average every week. The cladding of the structure also progressed, mainly on the tower's "backpack".

In February 2011, a Red fox
Red fox
(V. vulpes) was discovered to be living on the partially-completed 72nd floor, having climbed the building site's central stairwell. Nicknamed 'Romeo' by the RSPCA, the animal was rescued and later released back into the wild. The inauguration of The Shard
The Shard
on 5 July 2012

August 2011 saw steady progress in construction, with cladding enveloping more than half the building's exterior. Pouring of the concrete floors reached the 67th floor, and progression on the tower's cladding reached the 58th floor. By mid-August, the core box had been removed. By 19 September 2011, the tower's steel was approaching the height of the completed core, reaching almost 244 metres (801 ft). On 24 September, a final crane – at the time, the tallest ever built in Britain – was erected to install the skyscraper's upper spire. The spire was pre-fabricated and pre-assembled based upon 3D models, and underwent a "test run" in Yorkshire
before being lifted onto the building itself. By late December 2011, the Shard had become the tallest building in the European Union
European Union
, superseding the Commerzbank Tower in Frankfurt, Germany.

The Shard's steel structure was topped out on 30 March 2012, when its 66-metre (217 ft), 500-tonne spire was winched into place. The steel structure thus reached a height of 308.5 metres (1,012 ft). The final 516 panes of glass were added shortly after, topping the tower out at its full height of 309.6768 metres (1,016.000 ft).

The Shard
The Shard
was inaugurated on 5 July 2012 by the Prime Minister of Qatar , Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani
Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani
, in a ceremony attended by Prince Andrew, Duke of York
Prince Andrew, Duke of York
. The inauguration ceremony featured a laser light show comprising 12 lasers and 30 searchlights , which illuminated the building on the London
skyline. Practical completion of the building was achieved in November 2012.



Aerial view of the Shard, December 2016 *

February 2010 *

July 2010 *

September 2010 *

November 2010 *

January 2011 *

April 2011 *

August 2011 *

October 2011 *

April 2012 *

May 2012 *

October 2016

The Shard
The Shard
dominating the City of London
skyline, as seen from Forest Hill in July 2013


Standing 309.7 metres (1,016 ft) at its highest point, and 308.5 metres (1,012 ft) at the highest point of its steelwork, the Shard became the tallest building in the European Union
European Union
in December 2011, and the tallest completed building in Europe on 30 March 2012. It thus surpassed Frankfurt
's Commerzbank Tower , which, at 259 m (850 ft), was Europe's tallest building between 1997 and 2005. Thereafter, the Shard successively exceeded the heights of three Moscow skyscrapers, the Triumph-Palace
, Naberezhnaya Tower , and City of Capitals , each of which had held the European height record for roughly 2.5 years. However, upon its completion in November 2012, Moscow's 339-metre (1,112 ft) Mercury City Tower
Mercury City Tower
replaced the Shard as the tallest in Europe. The Shard
The Shard
may eventually be surpassed as the EU's tallest building by the 323-metre (1,060 ft) Hermitage Plaza building, which is planned to be completed in La Défense
La Défense
, Paris, in 2019.

The Shard
The Shard
is the second-tallest free-standing structure in the United Kingdom , after the 330-metre (1,083 ft) concrete transmission tower at Emley Moor . Another planned London
skyscraper, the Pinnacle , was originally proposed to rival the height of the Shard, but was reduced to a height of 287.9 metres (945 ft) because of concerns from the Civil Aviation Authority .


In February 2013, The Sunday Times
The Sunday Times
reported that the developers of the Shard were in negotiations to secure the first tenants of the building's 25 floors of office space. In May 2013, the Daily Mail reported that only six of The Shard's 72 habitable floors were in use, as a combination of high prices and poor situation discouraged buyers. At the time, potential tenants included financial restructuring specialists Duff & Phelps , private equity firm Hatton Corporation and the South Hook Liquefied Natural Gas Company .

The Shard's fourth, fifth and sixth floors host the HCA (Hospital Corporations of America), part of London
Bridge Hospital. The Shard's 31st, 32nd and 33rd floors host three restaurants: Oblix, Hutong and Aqua Shard. The building's Shangri-La Hotel , occupying floors 34–52, was initially expected to open by the end of 2013, but its opening was ultimately delayed to 6 May 2014. In March 2014, Mathys it is capable of running an entire channel independent from Al Jazeera's other hubs, and is the network's second-biggest hub after its facility in Doha
, Qatar.

In January 2015, further tenants for the Shard were announced, including IO Oil border:solid #aaa 1px">

* Architecture portal * London

* List of tallest buildings and structures in London
* List of tallest buildings in the world
List of tallest buildings in the world


* Ryugyong Hotel
Ryugyong Hotel
* Transamerica Pyramid
Transamerica Pyramid
* Lakhta Center


* ^ The building's operators officially stylise its name as The Shard, with the word "the" capitalised.


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The Shard
Opens Viewing Deck To Visitors". Sky News. 2 February 2013. Retrieved 2 February 2013. * ^ The Shard: The Official Guidebook. Thames & Hudson (2013). p.22. ISBN 9780500342848 . * ^ Piano, Renzo (2013). The Shard: London
Bridge Tower (in English and Italian). Matador. p. 74. ISBN 978-88-6264-006-0 . * ^ A B " The Shard
The Shard
– The Skyscraper
Center". Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. Retrieved 26 April 2013. * ^ The Shard
The Shard
at Emporis
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Bridge Tower, London". Designbuild-network.com. 15 June 2011. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ A B Weaver, Matt (15 April 2003). "Battle begins for London Bridge Tower". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 6 February 2013. * ^ "Shard funding crisis: Tower finances cast shadow over project". World Architecture News. 10 September 2007. Retrieved 7 July 2010. * ^ A B "Why do tall buildings have such silly names?". BBC News. 26 November 2010. Retrieved 27 November 2010. * ^ "List and details of the tallest buildings in the world". http://www.infoplease.com. Infoplease Encyclopedia. Retrieved 29 August 2015. External link in website= (help ) * ^ "A vertical city". The-Shard.com. Retrieved 5 August 2015. * ^ A B "Emley Moor". TheBigTower.com. Retrieved 12 February 2013. * ^ A B "Shard Tops Out". Skyscrapernews.com. 30 March 2012. Retrieved 2 April 2012. * ^ A B "Shards of light cut through the sky above London
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The Shard
opens up to share its high, wide and handsome view". The Guardian. 11 January 2013. Retrieved 12 January 2013. * ^ " The Shard
The Shard
may open for events, but not until late 2013". Event. 9 August 2012. Retrieved 14 November 2012. * ^ Whitten, Nick (20 May 2009). "Shard observation deck to be Europe\'s highest". Cnplus.co.uk. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ A B Bourke, Chris (20 January 2010). "Shard Developer Sellar to Seek Highest Office Rents Since 1980s". New York: Bloomberg. Retrieved 7 July 2010. * ^ Milmo, Cahal (25 July 2002). "London\'s \'Shard of Glass\' must face public inquiry". The Independent. London. Retrieved 7 July 2010. * ^ "\'The Shard\' set to change the London
skyline". Londonoffices.com. 24 February 2011. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ Sudjic, Deyan (18 May 2003). "Sold down the river". The Observer. London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ Weaver, Matt (19 November 2003). "\'Shard of glass\' set to join London
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* ^ "Shard construction moves closer with £196 million deal". London
SE1. 19 September 2006. Retrieved 7 July 2010. * ^ Lane, Thomas (2007). "Imagine that you are on level 80 and you want a sandwich. How long will that take you?". Building (36). London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ Monaghan, Angela (17 September 2007). "London\'s tallest skyscraper grounded by global credit crunch". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ Richardson, Sarah; McMeeken, Roxane (17 October 2008). "Mace\'s price for Shard rises by almost £85m". Building. London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ Rogers, David (2 April 2008). "Cleveland Bridge favourite for Shard of Glass steel prize". Construction News. London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ Thomas, Daniel (23 January 2008). "Qataris back London\'s \'Shard\'". Financial Times. London. Retrieved 3 February 2013. (Registration required (help)). * ^ "History of The Shard, London
Bridge". Shardldn.com. Retrieved 7 July 2012. * ^ Kenneth Powell (2003). New London
Architecture. Merrell. ISBN 1-85894-232-2 . * ^ "Key facts". Turner & Townsend. 21 March 2011. Retrieved 4 February 2013. * ^ " The Shard
The Shard
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The Shard
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Bridge". BBC News. Retrieved 18 November 2016. * ^ "Eyewitness: The Shard". The Guardian. 19 September 2011. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ "Crane Gives Dizzying Bird\'s Eye View of London". Sky News
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The Shard
part ...". London
Evening Standard. Retrieved 4 February 2013. * ^ A B "Qatar\'s Shard the tallest building in Europe now". Gulf Times. 3 January 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ "Shard\'s spire now in place on Europe\'s tallest building". BBC News. 30 March 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ "London\'s Shard gets spire to become Europe\'s tallest building". Metro. UK. 30 June 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ "April 2012 News". Londonbridgequarter.com. April 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012. * ^ "Shard owners shatter abseiling ambition of Hague Snr". The Independent . 24 May 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2012. * ^ \'The sky\'s the limit\' (Editorial). Financial Times (London). 6 July 2012. Retrieved 9 July 2012. (registration required ) * ^ "Russia\'s Mercury City tower cuts The Shard
The Shard
down to size". The Guardian. 5 November 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2012. * ^ "Toppled by the French! London\'s Shard will soon lose title of Europe\'s tallest building to Hermitage Plaza in Paris". Daily Mail. 9 March 2012. Retrieved 3 February 2013. * ^ " Paris
Hermitage towers to close financing this year, cost now €3bn". Property Investor Europe. 17 September 2013. Retrieved 16 December 2014. * ^ "The Pinnacle". Emporis
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The Shard
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. London. 25 May 2013. Retrieved 16 June 2013. * ^ "At last, Shard lures tenants". The Sunday Times
The Sunday Times
. London. 24 February 2013. Retrieved 26 February 2013. * ^ "Shard Said to Get Duff & Phelps as Tower\'s First Tenant". Bloomberg. 30 April 2013. Retrieved 17 July 2013. * ^ "Restaurant: Oblix, London". The Guardian
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. London. 8 June 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013. * ^ "Hutong at The Shard". The Handbook. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 25 June 2013. * ^ "Aqua Shard". Time Out. 7 January 2013. Retrieved 28 June 2013.

* ^ "Excitement builds for Shangri-La\'s summer opening at The Shard". Hospitality Interiors. 13 March 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2013.

* ^ "Shard\'s luxury hotel hit by fit-out delays". Building.co.uk. 6 June 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2013. * ^ "Shangri-La London
opens in The Shard". The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
. London. 6 February 2014. Retrieved 21 April 2014. * ^ Joanne, Harris (21 March 2014). "IP firm Mathys & Squire becomes first firm to move into Shard". The Lawyer. Retrieved 17 April 2014. * ^ Kate, Allen (13 February 2014). "Shard finds more tenants as Irvine Sellar steps up lettings". Financial Times. Retrieved 17 April 2014. * ^ "May 2014 news". The-Shard.com. Archived 30 May 2014 at the Wayback Machine
Wayback Machine
. * ^ " Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson
officially opens WBS London
at The Shard". wbs.ac.uk (in Eng). WBS. Retrieved 3 August 2017. CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link ) * ^ " Warwick Business School to open London
campus in the Shard". Financial Times. Retrieved 3 August 2017. * ^ "Al Jazeera to open new TV studio in The Shard". London
Evening Standard. 17 July 2013. Retrieved 31 July 2013. * ^ "Al Jazeera moves into The Shard". The-Shard.com. 2014. Retrieved 15 November