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Old November 14th, 2006, 04:42 PM   #1
DarJoLe
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Past contentious proposals for London

London has seen some fantastic buildings proposed for it over hundreds of years. Some have seen the light of the day, many, unfortunately, never will.

However in that list of architectural delights, there are some that, if they had of been built, would have certainly polarised opinion amongst Londoners and beyond. Would London be a better place with them?

Here are some examples:

BLOB
Future Systems
Trafalgar Square, 1985

Competition proposal for an office building on the grand buildings site of Trafalgar Square.

Large circular windows perforate the skin at intervals to provide view and outside contact. The surface is finished in white ceramic tiles with recessed rainwater channels. Photovoltaic cells can be integrated into the exterior wall to help supply the building energy needs.

Although only a competition entry, BLOB would certainly have changed the look of Trafalgar Square forever.






Aldgate Tower
Brook Limited
Parklin Yard, 1986

This 85-storey tower was to tower over the City of London and the East End as a testiment to Thatcherism and the Big Bang. It was shelved after the crash of the early 1990s.




Coin Street proposal
Richard Rogers
South Bank, 1979

This new 'string' development, linking Waterloo directly to the City with a series of glazed atriums and shopping malls, hotels, offices and apartments via a new footbridge across the Thames looked good on paper, but in reality would have meant the destruction of the OXO Tower and totally redefined the South Bank to what it is today.





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Old November 14th, 2006, 04:48 PM   #2
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Thank God that 'Blob' never happened.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 04:53 PM   #3
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Diana, Princess Of Wales Memorial Bridge
FAT (Fashion, Architecture Taste)
Bankside, 1997

This pedestrian 'living' bridge was a forerunner to Foster's Millennium Bridge we have today. Concepted as part of a linear park linking the South Bank with St Pauls, the bridge would be grassed with trees and flowerbeds at random intervals. The lyrics to Elton John's Candle In The Wind, a tribute re-recorded for Diana's funeral, would be engraved on each side of the bridge.

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Old November 14th, 2006, 04:55 PM   #4
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I liked the coin street plan

the top of the Aldgate plan is ugly

and the development that got built instead of the crazy blob actually works well for once!
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Old November 14th, 2006, 04:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarJoLe View Post
(Fashion, Architecture Taste)
were they being ironic?!?!
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Old November 14th, 2006, 05:12 PM   #6
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Old November 14th, 2006, 05:19 PM   #7
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Does anyone have any pictures of a Ken Yeang proposal for a set of twin towers for the City fringe?

The closest I can find of it is this image below, which was made by EH around 1998 or something to show the 'devastating' effect the Millennium Tower would have on the City. It also includes the cancelled Wilkinson Eyre Fenchurch Street tower, and the twin Ken Yeang scheme in the background.

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Old November 14th, 2006, 05:41 PM   #8
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The Pinnacle tower 120m i like this it fits in very well i beleive it got rejected because it blocked views for royals.
http://www.skyscrapernews.com/
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Old November 14th, 2006, 05:41 PM   #9
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that graphic was actually made in 2002, not 1998. they included the millennium tower in it even though swiss re was under construction on the site at the time.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 05:50 PM   #10
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They're all vile
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:00 PM   #11
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How I would love to have seen that bridge built!

Thank god the Blob never went through - think it would have had a tricky time anyway in such a location. The Coin Street proposal is interesting, at least the idea of linking the buildings with glass walkways, but if it meant goodbye to the Oxo tower I'm glad it was just a proposal.

I think the Albert Memorial Tower is the biggest letdown in terms of 'should have been builts' :

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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:01 PM   #12
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I regret the Santiago Calatrava building didn't get permission.
I think it's one of the finest designs proposed for the city in recent years.



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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:08 PM   #13
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The base is hideous though where it connects to the wider lower portion. Looks like Citypoint in that way. But the top is interesting.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:08 PM   #14
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I agree, the Albert Memorial would have been beautiful...though the people would have found it odd that the HUGE Prince Albert Memorial tower was far far bigger than the neigbouring Victoria Tower, lol.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:08 PM   #15
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That albert tower is a little bit big don't you think! It completely overshadows westminster abbey.

The blob must surely have beeen a joke project.

The coin street project would probably have been ok, the South bank is seriously lacking a decent shopping destination.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDRS View Post
The base is hideous though where it connects to the wider lower portion. Looks like Citypoint in that way. But the top is interesting.
Wasn't that meant to be a reclad of Citipoint or something?
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:11 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDRS View Post
The base is hideous though where it connects to the wider lower portion. Looks like Citypoint in that way. But the top is interesting.
err isnt it City Point?! The planners chopped the interesting roof off cause of St Pauls even though it looked like a pleasent spire from Waterloo bridge
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:20 PM   #18
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I long time ago Richard Rogers' was playing with a few new bridge ideas to help improve mobility around central London and across the river. I think the coin street idea got a bit further than this one, which is a shame because this is actually a really good idea. In 86 Roger's proposed moving the embankment road underground and turning the surface area into a park along the river. Nice. Charing Cross terminus would be moved south of the river to Waterloo, and the Hungerford bridge would be replaced with a pedestrian bridge and a couple of (i think) residential towers rising out of the Thames. Which would have been very exciting and futuristic.








All photos are copyright Richard Rogers Partnership.

The main idea was that the 80's property boom should not proceed in a piecemeal way. Roger's saw it as an opportunity to improve the city. Of course London like's piecemeal as much as architects like grand plans, but in retrospect it seems a shame this wasn't adopted. The new Charing Cross is a monstrosity, and the public realm between Waterloo/south bank and Trafalager square/strand remains messy and car dominated. The hungerford pedestrian bridges and the pedestrianisation of the north side of Trafalgar square have helped, but they have been a long time coming.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:23 PM   #19
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Was Green Bird meant to be built on Battersea Powerstation? That aerial photo looks like that area.
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:23 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potto View Post
err isnt it City Point?! The planners chopped the interesting roof off cause of St Pauls even though it looked like a pleasent spire from Waterloo bridge
It is the original reclad of CityPoint. The spire was supposed to frame St Paul's with the Millennium Tower's spire on the eastern side.

Alas, EH cut off the spire of this one, and stopped the Millennium Tower in its tracks.
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