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Guess Where Reflected

More clues if you look Large and Dark.


I was inspired to take another building reflected in a puddle shot and this time submit it to Guess Where London.... and since it's now been guessed I thought I'd add some blurb!


As Blech pointed out this is the back of Moor House. From this angle the inevitable curves are obscured as yes, this is yet another curved blue-glass building by Norman Foster. At the other end of London Wall is the aptly named 1 London Wall as seen here on my photostream which is also by Baron Foster of Thames Bank and is somewhat unsurprisingly a curved blue-glass building. As I mentioned in the guff for that picture there are some inspirational and innovative buildings by Foster Associates but there is also the Yet Another Normal Foster category within whose boundaries these two buildings are firmly planted.


The old Moor House on this spot was a 1970's slab office block and was sold in 1995 for redevelopment but was only later a casualty of the wrecking ball with the construction of the new building running from 2002 to 2005. From this angle the new building presents a flat expanse of glass which I like to think is a homage to the original – the other sides are, all snipes at Foster aside, a truly impressive combination of curved surfaces.


If Foster likes curves in his buildings this must be the Foster Orgasm of Curves and one can only hope that, now spent, he’ll move on to something new. At 276ft tall the surfaces of the building are best visualised by two cylinders intersecting at right angles – one ‘upright’ quarter-cylinder and one horizontal quarter-cylinder positioned so that the two flat sides are shared. The intersection of the two runs from the top corner, visible here, and swoops down to the opposite corner on Moorgate. Confused? Have a look here for help. Not easy to explain!


The design means that all the floors are different shapes which made construction somewhat complex although this is only half the story as the foundations for Moor House extend almost 200ft below ground and are some of the deepest in London. Below the building is also a 100ft deep ventilation shaft and an enormous ‘box’ – these for the Crossrail project, a route which will eventually allow travel from Heathrow to Canary Wharf in about 40 mins. The shaft will link with the railway tunnel, which has yet to be built – even though Moor House has super-foundations, designed specifically withstand the tunnelling, there was concern enough about the disruption for questions to be raised in parliament by the contractors… this to say nothing of potential peril for the Barbican and other buildings along the route. The ‘box’ will become part of the ticket hall for the station which is going to be a monster – the aim is to have a platform with entrances at each end, one at Moorgate and one at Liverpool St which I think gives a good illustration of the scale of the project. Huge!


I'll have more blurb on the other buildings in this shot later - both have already featured before in my photostream but I think a revisit is due. In the meantime I'll leave you with some flat blue glass to...


.. Enjoy


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Taken on August 14, 2009