diamond geezer

 Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Developing City: As part of the London Festival of Architecture, a major exhibition is being held at the Walbrook Building. That's the ribbed-blancmange-type building opposite Cannon Street station, if you're not familiar. One day the lower ground floor of the Walbrook will be retail space selling coffee, chocolates and knickers to the traders working in the offices above, but for now it's a perfect empty canvas for mass informational display. There are three sections to the exhibition - essentially past, present and future - with the emphasis very much on individual buildings and their place in the City. The historical section starts with Londinium, the Roman settlement-on-Thames, and works its way up through medieval and Georgian to the aftermath of the wartime Blitz. If you like maps, you're in for a treat. John Rocque's 1746 map of London, Westminster and Southwark is blown up to enormous proportions at the entrance, from the days when Knightsbridge and Camden were still fields (and some of you could probably spend quarter of an hour staring at this alone). The development of London Bridge gets full treatment (one of the proposals for its 19th century redevelopment was a twin bridge with separate drawbridges, blimey), as do several other key City buildings. Best bring your reading glasses if you wear them, there's a heck of a lot of background to digest on these giant boards. On to the present, which takes a more three-dimensional form. A huge 1:500 scale model of the City is on show, created with the kind of intricate detail that's only possible when you're an age-old settlement built on centuries of mercantile wealth. That's followed by individual scale models of some of London's older and newer skyscrapers, and forthcoming office developments, and any other new building the curators could grab the architects model of. I've seen a few of these before, but never quite so many all gathered together in one place, making for a most interesting potter round. And finally the exhibition looks ahead to 2050 and how the City might look then, based on flights of fancy and evidence-based speculation. I doubt that Farringdon will become a Fleet-side river city, or that Shoreditch will become a fluorescent entertainment hub, but I can well believe that Aldgate is ripe for transformation into the City's new financial skyscraper quarter. Lots to think about, lots to see, and lots of time to get here before the exhibition closes. The last day's Sunday 9th September, and it's open every day except Monday, with late opening on Fridays. Ian's been too and has written a full report with plenty of photos, so that's two recommendations for a visit.

<< click for Newer posts

click for Older Posts >>

click to return to the main page

...or read more in my monthly archives
Jan18  Feb18  Mar18  Apr18  May18  Jun18  Jul18
Jan17  Feb17  Mar17  Apr17  May17  Jun17  Jul17  Aug17  Sep17  Oct17  Nov17  Dec17
Jan16  Feb16  Mar16  Apr16  May16  Jun16  Jul16  Aug16  Sep16  Oct16  Nov16  Dec16
Jan15  Feb15  Mar15  Apr15  May15  Jun15  Jul15  Aug15  Sep15  Oct15  Nov15  Dec15
Jan14  Feb14  Mar14  Apr14  May14  Jun14  Jul14  Aug14  Sep14  Oct14  Nov14  Dec14
Jan13  Feb13  Mar13  Apr13  May13  Jun13  Jul13  Aug13  Sep13  Oct13  Nov13  Dec13
Jan12  Feb12  Mar12  Apr12  May12  Jun12  Jul12  Aug12  Sep12  Oct12  Nov12  Dec12
Jan11  Feb11  Mar11  Apr11  May11  Jun11  Jul11  Aug11  Sep11  Oct11  Nov11  Dec11
Jan10  Feb10  Mar10  Apr10  May10  Jun10  Jul10  Aug10  Sep10  Oct10  Nov10  Dec10 
Jan09  Feb09  Mar09  Apr09  May09  Jun09  Jul09  Aug09  Sep09  Oct09  Nov09  Dec09
Jan08  Feb08  Mar08  Apr08  May08  Jun08  Jul08  Aug08  Sep08  Oct08  Nov08  Dec08
Jan07  Feb07  Mar07  Apr07  May07  Jun07  Jul07  Aug07  Sep07  Oct07  Nov07  Dec07
Jan06  Feb06  Mar06  Apr06  May06  Jun06  Jul06  Aug06  Sep06  Oct06  Nov06  Dec06
Jan05  Feb05  Mar05  Apr05  May05  Jun05  Jul05  Aug05  Sep05  Oct05  Nov05  Dec05
Jan04  Feb04  Mar04  Apr04  May04  Jun04  Jul04  Aug04  Sep04  Oct04  Nov04  Dec04
Jan03  Feb03  Mar03  Apr03  May03  Jun03  Jul03  Aug03  Sep03  Oct03  Nov03  Dec03
 Jan02  Feb02  Mar02  Apr02  May02  Jun02  Jul02 Aug02  Sep02  Oct02  Nov02  Dec02 

eXTReMe Tracker
jack of diamonds
Life viewed from London E3

» email me
» follow me on twitter
» follow the blog on Twitter
» follow the blog on RSS

my flickr photostream