The Shard

Also referred to as the shard of glass, The Shard is an 87-storey skyscraper (309 m), which sits in the heart of London. Construction began in 2009 and was completed three years later in 2012, making it Western Europe’s tallest building. Designed by architect Renzo Piano, The Shard is the second tallest free standing structure in the UK. It’s exterior boasts 11,000 glass panels – that’s equivalent in area to eight football pitches or two-and-a-half Trafalgar Squares.

The building was developed to have multiple uses, described on the website as a ‘vertical city where people can live, work and relax’. This motto was clearly taken on board by a fox, nicknamed Romeo, that was found on the 72nd floor towards the end of construction. The Shard has a massive floor area of 1,307,383sqft , 72 out of 95 floors are habitable and The Shard also contains 36 working elevators.

Floor Plan (2018)

73–95 Spire
68–72 The View from The Shard (observatory)
53–65 Residences
34–52 Shangri-La Hotel
33 Hutong
32 Aqua Shard
31 oblix
28 South Hook Gas
27 Arma Partners / Campari Group
26 CoStar Group / Marc Hermann Wealth Management
24–25 The Office Group
23 Foresight Group
22 Khazanah / Jellyfish
20-21 Kraft Heinz
19 Medical Protection Society
18 Gallup / Foresight Group
17 Warwick Business School / Sage Group
16 Al Jazeera English
15 Mathys & Squire / Arcapita / Xio Partners / Fulcrum Chambers
14 Duff & Phelps
13 Tabcorp Holdings / Warwick Business School / Duff & Phelps / Sage Group
12 Mitie
11 Dods Group / Matches Fashion
10 Real Estate Management (UK) Limited / Robert Half / Protiviti
9 IO Oil and Gas / Sapphire Systems
8 Greenberg Traurig / Matches Fashion
7 Tiffany & Co. / Matches Fashion
4–6 Clinic (HCA Healthcare at the Shard)
3 Shard Quarter Management Suite
2 Office Reception
Ground Hotel, restaurant and observatory entrances

Facts

  • 95% of The Shard is owned by State of Qatar and rest is owned by Seller Property Group.
  • On 11 July 2013, six female Greenpeace volunteers climbed the Shard and unfurled a flag in protest against Arctic oil drilling by Royal Dutch Shell.
  • BASE jumpers reportedly jumped from The Shard more than a dozen times between 2009 and 2012. Four jumps were reportedly made by Essex roofer Dan Witchalls.
  • After the Shard was completed only 17 of the floors were being used by tenants in 2014 and rest of them were empty because of the rent being very expensive and less traffic.

Sydney Opera House

The Sydney opera house is not just an ordinary musical theater, the element that makes it different is the architecture that we can see inside and outside. The opera house appears like a beautiful set of sails gliding over the harbor.

Sir Eugene Goossens had proposed this idea, soon a committee was formed formed to take the idea further and in 1955 a design was found it was created by a danish architect Jorn Utzon. The Bennelong was chosen as the site to build the opera house and the work was executed in 1959.

Problems occurred which had stalled the process of building the opera house such as over-running of budgets, corruption and design problems. No matter the circumstance the Sydney Opera House was finally completed in 1973 at a cost of $78 million nearly 16 times the original estimates.

The Sydney Opera House was formally opened by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, on 20 October 1973. A large crowd attended. Utzon was not invited to the ceremony, nor was his name mentioned. The opening was televised and included fireworks and a performance of Beethoven’s Symphony IX.

Awards

  • RAIA Merit Award, 1974.
  • Meritorious Lighting Award of the Illuminating Engineering Society of Australia, 1974.
  • RAIA Civic Design Award, 1980.
  • RAIA Commemorative Award, Jorn Utzon – Sydney Opera House, 1992.

Facts

  • The tiles placed on the roof consisted of 1,056,56 which were all imported from Sweden which are self cleaning.
  • The concert hall is the world largest mechanical organ in the world , with more that 20,000 pipes.
  • HM Queen Elizabeth II formally opened the Opera house on 20 October, 1973.