Thursday, November 20, 2003

So what do we make of this? The London Bridge Tower. Well at least it's fairly elegant (if a bit Mordor-y at the top).
And how long before the viewing platforms close because of the risk of terrorist activity? (and how much will the owners liberate from the tourists for the pleasure of just looking?).
Don't ya just love English Heritage's complaints about the impact on St Paul's? Well the precedent has already been made[1], and cities either grow, or they do the opposite (and it's the people the city wants who are the first to go). And wasn't Tower Bridge loathed when it was built as a gross ersatz mockery of the Tower of London, and thus destroying the atmosphere of the Tower? Buildings traditionally are treated with contempt when planned, liked when new, start to fall out of favour after 15 years, sink to utter despisal after 30 years, loiter around being arrogant follies at about 40 years, start to become respected after 50 years, and become loved after about 70 years. Assuming they last that long, and they were made with materials that last. Although the timescale varies with society's relationship to design[2].

[1] I suppose we could always knock down Guy's, and anything else that stick up above, say, about 4 stories. I'm sure Tate Modern won't mind you lobbing the top off. Hey we could follow the Parisian model and have virtually every building the same stunted height for miles around, even if that means the city starts to burrow to find room.
[2] Which implies people will start liking 50s, 60s and 70s stuff in that gloriously concretey International style (but maybe by that time we will have discovered that it is in fact 80s buildings that are the root of all evil).

Though reading the architect's blurb on the site - this seems to be a recurring theme in modern design, which I can never fathom - what is arrogant about buildings appearing to touch the ground? (and unless there's cunning levitating magnets and stuff, they all have to anyway).
Anyhoo, have to go, so there might be more on this later.

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