Another London highrise development will join the class of creatively nicknamed buildings in the city like The Gherkin, The Cheesegrater, and The Walkie Talkie. At 52-54 Lime Street, The Scalpel is beginning to climb above the hoarding that hugs the perimeter of the site. Insurance company W.R. Berkley Corporation will occupy the 39-storey office tower, which fills a central location opposite landmarks Lloyd's of London and the Leadenhall Building.
Designed by award-winning architects Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, the building's crystalline shape and distinctive angular geometry is to be enhanced by a modern glazed envelope. The approximately 400,000 square feet of office floor space will be arranged around a side core located to the south of the building, helping limit solar heat gain.
The 192-metre commercial development also features retail and restaurant spaces, including a cafe positioned at the Lime Street entrance. The existing public realm around the 2008-built Willis Building will be supplemented by an 11,000-square-foot plaza. An extensive landscaping program and a wealth of seating areas are planned, in addition to a biodiverse green roof holding native wildflower species.
Before construction on the tower could begin, three preexisting structures were progressively demolished beginning in 2013. The current view of the site portrays a much different scene. With the old structures gone, 30 St. Mary Axe becomes visible from some angles, soon to be blocked once again by the shimmering new highrise. Three cranes now service the confined property as the tower floors begin to climb. Estimated completion for The Scalpel is 2017.
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