Building a Cheesegrater.
122 Leadenhall Street, which is also known as the Leadenhall Building, is a 225-metre-tall skyscraper in central London. It opened in July 2014 and was designed by the Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners; it is known informally as The Cheesegrater because of its distinctive wedge shape.
The new tower features a tapered glass façade on one side which reveals steel bracings, along with a ladder frame to emphasize the vertical appearance of the building. It also appears to anchor the tower to the ground, giving a sense of strength. Unlike most other tall buildings, which typically use a concrete core to provide stability, the steel “megaframe”, engineered by Arup, provides stability to the entire structure and is the world’s tallest of its kind.
The base features a 30m high atrium which is open to the public and extends the adjacent plaza. The position of the northern support core relative to the office areas means that the structure is not required to be over-clad with fire protection, allowing the whole to be designed and expressed as visible steelwork. This articulated steel frame provides clarity to the whole assemblage.
This unusual design’s main drawback is the building’s relatively small floorspace for a building of its height. It is hoped that the slanting wedge-shaped design will have less impact on the protected sightline of St Paul’s Cathedral when viewed from Fleet Street and the west.
About the Author:
Bruno Dursin – Managing Director at Believe in Steel. Bruno has more than 30 years of experience in promoting steel & steel solutions. His clients benefit from his extensive network within the building industry.