London Cityscape 2

The Gothic Revival direction represented by A. W. Pugin received its first manifestation in the new building of the Parliament building (1837 ff., Including Westminster Hall, with Big Ben; UNESCO World Heritage Site) by Sir C. Barry. Around the middle of the century, the churches All Saints, Margaret Street (1850–59), and Saint James-the-Less in Westminster (1858–61) followed, and by G. G. Scott the Saint Pancras Station with the associated neo-Gothic hotel building (1868–74) and the Law Courts of G. E. Street (1874-82), while the Foreign Office (1862-73) at Whitehall is held in representative Renaissance forms by G. G. Scott. In 1851 J. Paxton built the Crystal Palace for the 1st World Exhibition in London. In South Kensington, south of the Albert Memorial and Albert Hall built in 1863 by G. G. Scott, a larger building complex was built with the Natural History Museum (1873–81), the Imperial College (1887–93) and the Victoria & Albert Museum (1899– 1909).

The expansion of the city in the late 19th century led to the incorporation of the surrounding area into the County of London, for which 1911-13 a neoclassical administrative building opposite Westminster on the south bank of the Thames with a semicircular colonnade was built. In 1899, the segmental arched streets of the »Aldwich« were built around the church of Saint Mary-le-Strand with a neo-baroque edifice characterized by monumental rows of columns, which is repeated after 1905 at the Piccadilly Hotel in Regent Street laid out by J. Nash. The Buckingham Palace (parts open to the public since 1993), after the renovation (from 1824) royal residence since 1837, received in 1913 by Sir Aston Webb (* 1849, † 1930) a neo-baroque east facade; The Victoria Memorial has stood on the forecourt since 1911. On the edge of Kensington Gardens is Kensington Palace (remodeled by C. Wren and W. Kent). 1895–1903 the Catholic Westminster Cathedral was built as a monumental Byzantine domed church.

After 1945, the city, which was largely destroyed in 1940-45, was given a shape commensurate with its economic importance through the construction of office and administration buildings. Architecturally significant buildings in the city include Bush Lane House Offices (1976, Arup & Associates), National Westminster Bank Tower (1981, R. Seifert & Partners), Lloyd’s Building (1978–86, R. Rogers & Partners), The Queen Elizabeth II. Conference Center (1986, Powell, Moya & Partners), the Barbican Center, Swiss Re Tower (also referred to as “30 St Mary Ax”; 2001-04, N. Foster in collaboration with Arup Associates), in others Districts: the US embassy (1960, Eero Saarinen), the Olsen Building (1969, N. Foster), the Danish embassy (1977, A. Jacobsen), the extension of the former Tate Gallery (today Tate Britain, 1985, J. Stirling), the 310 m high office tower “The Shard” (2009–12, Renzo Piano).

With the conversion of a former power station on the south bank of the Thames to the “Tate Modern” museum (1997–2000, by Herzog & de Meuron), the Tate received additional exhibition space for art of the 20th century and contemporary art; the more than 5 million visitors a year made an extension necessary (also by Herzog & de Meuron, opened in 2016). As an extension of the National Gallery, R. Venturi and his wife Denise Scott Brown (* 1931) built the Sainsbury wing with postmodern accents (opened in 1991). When the British Library moved into its own new building, the British Museum (remodeled by N. Foster, 1997–2000) new exhibition space. In 1997, the faithful reconstruction of the Globe Theater, which burned down in 1613, was completed. Of the numerous modern public buildings, the masterful steel and glass architecture of the new concourse at Waterloo Station (completed in 1994) by N. Grimshaw and the City Hall (completed in 2002) by N. Foster are particularly noteworthy. In 2008, the Kings Place (Dixon Jones) cultural center was opened with two concert halls and two galleries.

In 1981, when the London Docklands Development Corporation was founded, a new waterfront district was built in the old port area east of Tower Bridge. On both sides of the Thames, with the participation of leading architects (including SOM, I. M. Pei, Fox Associates, C. Pelli) warehouses were converted into residential buildings, a banking district (former Canary Wharf) with numerous office buildings (including the 244 m high office tower “One Canada Square” by C. Pelli), industrial plants, shops, restaurants, hotels, water sports etc. Leisure facilities created.

According to zipcodesexplorer, 215 parks (altogether 220 km 2) are spread over the city area. The largest inner-city green spaces are Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, Regent’s Park, Hampstead Heath and Highgate Cemetery (with the grave of K. Marx), in the outer boroughs Richmond Park, rich in wildlife, and neighboring Bushy Park with Hampton Court Park and Kew Gardens. Of the three famous hypermarkets in the City, only the Central Meat and Poultry Market in Smithfield remains. The Covent Garden fruit and flower market was relocated to the south bank of the Thames near Vauxhall Bridge in 1973, and the Billingsgate Fish Market moved down the River Thames in the West India Docks in 1982. The cityscape also includes the street markets, among others. Portobello Road Antique Market in Kensington, Petticoat Lane Krammarkt in the City, Camden Lock Handicraft Market in Camden. Of the numerous cities and villages that became part of London’s growth (e.g. Croydon, Richmond upon Thames) and villages, most have retained their own character.

London Cityscape 2