The Shard

A lot of buildings had gotten nicknames over time, regardless of their original name. The Shard got its nickname practically while being built, and it never got to be called “London Bridge Tower” as it was originally conceived. The name “Shard” is intuitive, as the building is a glass pinnacle reaching for the sky. It is an icicle, a crystal, a sharp piece of glass, a translucent stalagmite, a mast of a ship, a spire and it became an instant emblem to the city of London.

Many of the super-tall skyscrapers of the new century had taken form of pyramids, or they were in some way tapered, losing floor area as they rise. The nature of this approach is constructive, as buildings of this type have better wind resistance and are easier to solve structurally.

The aesthetic gains of such approach were, in case of The Shard, a big plus. The special, low iron glass surfaces never show the same reflection and the building changes its appearance as the sun progresses over the sky, from white, to all shades of crystalline blue.

The brainchild of the acclaimed architect Renzo Piano, the tallest building of Britain soon became a new marker to search for and orientate around the city, a symbol of the South Bank urban revival and one of the most attractive contours of the city skyline.

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