The City Hall is a unique and striking modernist building located in Southwark on the south bank of the River Thames in Greater London. This building is the headquarters of the Greater London Authority that comprises the Mayor of London and the London Assembly. Despite its name, the City Hall does not serve nor is located in a city.
City Hall London Profile
The City Hall was constructed by Ove Arup and Partners. It was designed Norman Foster. The building was completed to the tune of 65 million pounds.
The City Hall stands 45 meters tall with a gross floor area of around 185,000 square feet or 18,000 square meters. There are total of 10 floors above ground. The building follows an unusual bulbous shape that has made people compare it to various things such as Darth Vader’s helmet, a wood louse or an out of shape egg.
City Hall London Design
The City Hall is designed as a modified sphere, the shape of which gives the building neither a front nor a back in conventional terms. The angled sphere design of the building was partly to make it more energy efficient. The building ensures minimal heat gain during the summer and minimal heat loss during the winter. The building exterior is clad with 3,844 glass panels that incorporate shading devices. Each of the panels is cut by laser and is unique from each other.
Inside, the City Hall features a 500-meter helical walkway that leads up to the full height of the building. The walkway provides views of the building’s interiors. The building’s floor space offers flexibility that allows it to be used as an open floor or transformed into cellular office spaces. The top floor of the building is referred to as “London’s living room” and leads out into a balcony that provides visitors with a 360 degree view of the city. In 2007, solar panels were installed in the building roof in order to further improve the building’s energy efficiency.