30 St. Mary Axe
Londonâ€™s first ecological tall building and an iconic addition to the cityâ€™s skyline, 30 St Mary Axe is the London headquarters of insurance company Swiss Re
30 St Mary Axe is generated by a radial plan, its energy-conscious enclosure resolves walls and roof into a continuous triangulated skin, allowing column-free floor space, light and views.
The double-glazed cladding sits outside of the structural gridshell.The offices inside have louvre blinds and a vertical laminated glass screen (convenient for attaching partitions). The void between the two sets of glazing is ventilated. The triangular atria, which have the planning benefit of leaving the office spaces almost rectangular, also provide greater daylight penetration.
Maintaining internal conditions is almost entirely about cooling. While there is little exposed thermal capacity â€“ floors are carpeted and ceilings suspended â€“ there is the facility to flush-through the building at night by natural ventilation.
The design of the 40-storey tower - nicknamed the Gherkin - gives the opportunity to turn most of the site at ground level into valuable public space. The trademark tapered shape of the building gives a small footprint (just under 50m across), and is perceived from the ground as less high than it actually is.
- Begun: 2001
- Completed: 2003
- Floor area: 47,950m2
- Sector: Office
- Total cost: £130M
- Tender date: 1999
- Address: 30 St Mary Axe, London, EC3A 8EP, United Kingdom
- Architect: Foster + Partners
- Project architects: Ken Shuttleworth, Norman Foster, Robin Partington, Simon Reed
- Client: Swiss Re
- Project manager: RWG Associates
- Cost consultant: Gardiner & Theobold
- Construction Management: Kontor GTCM
- Planning consultant: Montagu Evans
- Structural engineer: Arup
- Mechanical and Electrical Engineer: Hilson Moran Partnership
- Environmental engineer: BDSP Partnership
- Landscape architect: Derek Lovejoy Partnership
- Main: Skanska Construction UK
- Main contractor: Skanska Construction UK