I have watched The Shard‘s steady construction years now, and today the Viewing Gallery on top of Western Europe‘s biggest building was opened to the public!
At a whopping 1,016ft, The Shard is without doubt the best place to go to view the City of London. And as is typical in this country, the grand opening was watered down with quite a bit of rain and gray skies. This didn’t dampen London Mayor Boris Johnson‘s spirits though as he happily posed for pictures & cut the ribbon to open the Shard’s observation deck to the public this morning.
Check out the photos below, you get an amazing view of the London skyline!
The Shard Fact File:
- The Shard is is 1016ft (309.6m) high
- It has 11,000 glass panels
- The area of the glass facade is 602,779 ft squared equal to eight football pitches
- There are 44 lifts, including double-decker lifts and 306 flights of stairs
- The total floor space is 31.4 acres
- 95 per cent of the construction materials are recycled
- Each facet forms a shard, a plane of glass gently inclined inwards, rising towards the top
- The corners of the development are open and the shards do not touch, allowing the building to ‘breathe’
- There are 72 occupiable floors
- A further 15 levels will make up the ‘spire’
- The ground floor Shard Plaza will be a public area with seating and planting
- The second floor will be a retail space
- The fourth to 28th floors will have 595,000 sq ft of office and winter gardens
- The 31st to 33rd floors will have various international restaurants
- The 34th to 52nd floors will house the Shangri-La Hotel and Spa, with 200 luxuriously appointed rooms
- The 53rd to 65th floors will have 10 exclusive residences with 360 degree views across London
- The 68th to 72nd floors will be the public observation galleries