Best Tall Building 200-299 meters Award of Excellence: Newfoundland, London

Billie Lee
Director
HCL Architects, London

Creativity in Structural Design Sets a New Precedent for Canary Wharf

Given its proximity to a large bend on the River Thames, and its position on the central axis of the Middle Dock, Newfoundland is in a highly visible location both within the Canary Wharf Estate and on the famous London skyline. The narrow site posed serious challenges for such a tall building, constrained on one side by a road and on the other by docks. Two London Underground (LU) tunnels run directly beneath, restricting available locations for piles. The prominence of the location, the site constraints and the importance of the project to the developer demanded a design of exceptional architectural and engineering quality. The building has a very clear long-range identity and an exceptionally delicate close-range aesthetic, a combination rarely found in such tall towers. It represents the evolution of the estate, where people can now live, work and visit.

Newfoundland’s striking appearance stems from the combined structural and architectural concept that was developed to enhance and maximize technical and aesthetic performance. The building has a modern tripartite classical design concept: a distinct base, middle and top – all designed with classical proportions and respect of the golden section. A solution to the building’s lateral system was key to maximizing the site’s potential. A diagrid on the perimeter of the building had several engineering advantages over other options, providing adequate stiffness and relatively few landing points with the ground. The adopted scheme consists of a structural steel diagrid of eight-story diamonds with a concrete core, steel beams with bespoke precast planks at node floors, and post-tensioned concrete slabs on intermediate floors.

View Building Information on CTBUH.org

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