300-metre-high skyscraper planned for London
Image credit: DBox for Eric Parry Architects
A new skyscraper nicknamed Trellis will be built in the City of London next to the Gherkin and Cheese-Grater. At 305m, the structure will become London’s and Europe’s second tallest after the Shard.
Officially called 1 Undershaft, the 73-storey building will provide 130,000 square metres of office space, enough to accommodate 10,000 workers. The structure was designed by London-based studio Eric Parry Architects and will be developed by Singapore-based Aroland Holdings Limited.
“This development shows the high levels of investor confidence in London’s status as a global city following our decision to leave the European Union,” said Chris Hayward, chairman of the City of London Corporation’s planning committee, which approved the project.
Currently, there are more than 430 buildings of 20 storeys or more in the pipeline in London, according to a survey conducted earlier this year by independent organisation New London Architecture.
However, a study by consultancy firm Arcadis doesn’t share the optimism about the future of London’s post-Brexit construction sector. The report released today says the construction industry may lose up to 200,000 workers in the case of a hard Brexit and 135,000 workers, if the UK stays within the European Single Market – the soft Brexit alternative.
The withdrawal from EU would widen the UK skills gap, the report suggested, increasing the price of labour and raising cost.
“What started as a skills gap could soon become a skills gulf,” said James Bryce of Arcadis. “The British construction sector has been built on overseas labour for generations, and restrictions of any sort will hit the industry. Missing out on over 200,000 people entering the workforce could mean rising costs for business and much-needed homes and transport networks being delayed.”
The idea of a new skyscraper in London is likely to anger critics, who fear London’s historical landmarks are being increasingly overshadowed by the mushrooming towers.