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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Developer: Aviva Life & Pensions UK Ltd

Architect: Farshid Moussavi Architecture

14/00496/FULMAJ | Demolition of the existing building and erection of a new building of two basements, ground and 17 upper storeys comprising office (Class B1) use [39,023sq.m GEA] and flexible retail (Class A1/A3) publicly accessible space [438sq.m GEA] and associated cycle parking, servicing, storage and plant. [Total 39,461sq.m GEA]. The proposals are contrary to one or more policies of the development plans in force in the area. | 130 Fenchurch Street London EC3M 5DJ


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr

The existing building:


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr

What it could have been. The developers original plans for a 172m or 120m tower, scaled back after talking to the City of London planning department. It looks like 20 Fenchurch street will be lonely for some time yet.


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr


130 Fenchurch Street by corerising, on Flickr
 

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Looks evil, but better than the older proposed building, another funny shape would of really made the city look a bit silly.
 

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Absolutely awful.
 

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Ampersands & What
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah, there was a distinct lack of renders in the planning application. The City of London Planning department threatened to throw it out as the agent didn't pay the £80k application fee, and include one of the required documents which they had left out. I believe this has now been resolved as the deadline was the 4th of July to have those both submitted. Some of the building heights listed in the wider context views, like for 20 Fenchurch Street and 40 Leadenhall are wrong as well on some of the diagrams. It all feels very half arsed.
 

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I wondered if this building might get knocked down for a new development. It's a shame the proposals are so non-eventful. What an incredible site this is for a really good skyscraper - unless height limits are in place here.
 

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Not terrible, but pretty forgettable.

I had a little outburst earlier about London and its love affair with blocky low/mid rises, but at least they tend to be away from the City; this is just another wasted opportunity.

Why oh why are we making the same mistakes again? This is prime location, grade A land and yet all we are seeing are these horrific stumps which will prove to be terribly short sighted in 20 or 30 years time.
 

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This is a truly awful design. Its not architecture, just a vertical extrusion of the largest floor plate that can be squeezed onto the site, presumably delimited in height by planners advising not to go higher than the neighbouring Generalli proposal. i.e. form follows profit.

What kind of advice are the City of London planners providing? The previous proposal was pretty bad too. Designing quality buildings that meet functional office type requirements is not that difficult. Is it time for Prince Charles to speak up again?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This is a truly awful design. Its not architecture, just a vertical extrusion of the largest floor plate that can be squeezed onto the site, presumably delimited in height by planners advising not to go higher than the neighbouring Generalli proposal. i.e. form follows profit.

What kind of advice are the City of London planners providing? The previous proposal was pretty bad too. Designing quality buildings that meet functional office type requirements is not that difficult. Is it time for Prince Charles to speak up again?
They were allowed to go 1 floor above the Generalli proposal. No more than that.
 

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Yeah, it's mad: thee developers have doubled or even tripled the massing of the building without hardly adding any height. That's going to block out so much light and make the surrounding area generally oppressive. On top of that, it's black!

Why not go for a tall, slender tower here which steps up to the Pinnacle and create a pocket park & cafés at its base?
 

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What an utter waste of space. What are the City planers thinking!?
Title says Proposed not approved so presumably we have yet to see what they think...?

On which note I noticed it says this in the info you copied Core Rising:

The proposals are contrary to one or more policies of the development plans in force in the area.

do you know what that refers to?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Title says Proposed not approved so presumably we have yet to see what they think...?

On which note I noticed it says this in the info you copied Core Rising:

The proposals are contrary to one or more policies of the development plans in force in the area.

do you know what that refers to?
I'm afraid not. I'll have a proper look through the application again tomorrow.

There are three renders of the scheme on the architects website. However these are embedded in flash code, and I have no idea how to see the image in the coding to be able to post them here.

http://www.farshidmoussavi.com/flash/index.html
 

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I'm afraid not. I'll have a proper look through the application again tomorrow.
I think I've found it, section 5.14 - 5.19

It provides 429sqm retail vs 1487sqm retail in the current building, despite Policy DM20.2 of the draft Local Plan seeks to encourage the provision and resist the loss of retail frontage and floorspace within the Retail Links. Blah blah active frontage blah blah amenity offer blah blah On balance, these benefits are considered to outweigh the reduction in existing retail floorspace, which is not considered to be of a particularly high quality.

There are three renders of the scheme on the architects website. However these are embedded in flash code, and I have no idea how to see the image in the coding to be able to post them here.

http://www.farshidmoussavi.com/flash/index.html
universal derision above, but... I think I actually kind of like it? or at least don't mind it.

possibly just because it reminds me a bit of this in victoria which was about the first "wow, 'skyscrapers!'" photography moment I had upon moving to london (hilarious as that seems in this post-shard age).

black cladding like that can be oppressive but it can work, and from the (obviously flattering) renders it would slot into the street not to 'heavily' there.

obviously no argument such a site could, probably should do something better, but in itself i don't mind it on first look
 

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Well, having now seen it on the website, it does look a lot better than I initially though. Here's a screenshot of the view of it down Fenchurch Street:

 

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I like it - a sharpness with the fluting and angles along with the discreet black glass - very Houston except in height - almost like a pinstriped city gent. It will have presence and a nice change from all the transparent glass around. But a lost opportunity in height here as has been mentioned. Since so many of you dislike this breed, perhaps being no higher is a good thing.
 

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Black glass isn't a problem per se, but with this superlatively bulky massing in an area with very narrow streets, I don't think it's an acceptable design decision.
 

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I'm warming to this building, but from its street view. I think Fenchurch Street needs something like this in this location. The design isn't all good in my opinion and it's also a shame that a skyscraper isn't going here. But I think it looks great overall with 20 FS in the background. It's beginning to tie the street together, so to speak. There is a flow now emerging rather than gaps as it has now. The eye is drawn around the corner to 20 FS and I think it looks really impressive. I think the width of this building helps with that too. And, as gravesVpelli says, there's good contrast between the glass and steel of other buildings which seems to draw the eye to 20 FS even more. At 79m, it's still going to have enough height to be imposing and tie it together with 20 FS.

Perhaps not the two most impressive buildings to look down on. But from street level, I think this could turn out to be very impressive.
 

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The CoL planners are such an inconsistent bunch. They define an Eastern cluster with 20FC its Southern limit. At the moment many castigate the CoL for approving 20FC as it sits on its own yet there has now been 2 proposals that would have linked it to the cluster, here and next door at 130FC where the planners have actively discouraged developers from submitting tall towers and instead push for ground sucking bulky blobs that no one finds attractive.

I don't what there thinking is for Fenchurch St but a collection of blocky stumps isn't making it an attractive thoroughfare. Fountain House, being an almost island site was the perfect spot for a tall slender tower yet they are happy with this. I can only hope there is a tower being planned nearby and they don't want this restricting light issue so are willing to sacrifice this site.

Without doubt IMO this is the biggest wasted opportunity in the City since the Minerva tower was cancelled for another blob of a building.

Truly terrible decision here. I would make an effort to respond to the application but seeing as it's the City once an application is submitted and gone through the planners design scrutiny resistance is useless as it will simply be ignored.
 
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