The Shard London Skyscraper Photos, Architect, Renzo Piano Building Design Pictures

The Shard London Skyscraper

London Bridge: Key Skyscraper in England, UK, design by RPBW.

post updated 29 March 2024

The Shard London skyscraper, tower glass facade
photo : Rob Telford

New photos added 13 February 2013:

The Shard London Skyscraper Building

The Shard London
photo : Potto – Skyscraper City

The Shard London Tower
photo : Paul Raftery

The Shard London Building The Shard London by Renzo Piano Architect The Shard London by Renzo Piano
photos : Michel Denance

Viewing Gallery Preview
The Shard Viewing Gallery opening will be on 1 Feb 2013 – for a cost of £24.95.

The Shard Viewing Gallery – BBC video:

Report by The Guardian on 11 Jan 2013:

“the entrance at ground level is an anticlimax…coming by tube, as most will, you don’t even see the Shard before you enter its bowels…It is a relief to climb the stairs to the uppermost open deck of the 72nd floor, where the city sounds hit you along with gusts of fresh air. Surrounded by fractured plates of glass sliding to a jagged halt and the open steel carcass soaring several floors above to the ultimate summit, it is a breathtaking sight”.

The Shard Viewing Gallery – external link to article by Oliver Wainwright

Photos © Adrian Welch from 12 Nov 2012:

The Shard Building The Shard The Shard Tower

Photos © Nick Weall – added 23 Sep 2012:

The Shard Tower London The Shard Tower Building

Photo © Keepclicking – added 10 Sep 2012:

The Shard Tower

The Shard London Skyscraper Opening

Inauguration of The Shard

July 5th: Official Inauguration of The Shard, Western Europe’s tallest building

Video footage from the laser show:

New videos, 6 Jul 2012
The Shard London skyscraper film on YouTube

Shard architect Renzo Piano should be banned from building in London because his latest buildings have done such harm to the capital, said Dixon Jones partner Ed Jones.

Hours after a laser show lit up central London to inaugurate the Shard, Jones poured cold water on the celebrations, describing Europe’s tallest building as “an embarrassment”, reports BD.

Its architect should be imprisoned in the Tower of London to contemplate his folly across the river, he suggested.

“The Shard is a really terrible building,” said Jones, whose Exhibition Road redevelopment won a RIBA Award last month.

“It’s a ridiculous notion to put a 1000 ft building in a side street. It makes all the buildings around it suddenly look useless and pathetic. It does no service to the city.

“Canary Wharf was criticised at the time but those buildings look fine because they are far enough away from the 19th-century city.”

Jones also said Piano’s other recent work in London – Central St Giles in Bloomsbury – was a “complete disaster”.

He said: “Maybe we should ban him from building here because he is a monster. We should put him in the Tower.”

The Shard London laser show film on YouTube

At approx 22.10 BST on Thursday July 5th there was a spectacular laser show – the biggest London has ever seen – projected onto and from The Shard.

The Shard London building film on YouTube

At a height of 309.6 metres (1,016 feet) and with a total 72 occupied floors reaching skyward into a breathtaking 15 story spire, the Shard London Bridge Quarter is set to be the tallest building in Western Europe.

The Shard photos – exclusive to e-architect – 28 Jun 2012

English tower design by architect Renzo Piano British skyscraper design by Renzo Piano architect British skyscraper design by Renzo Piano Building Workshop UK tower by Renzo Piano Building Workshop
photos © Nick Weall

The Shard is a multi-use vertical city which features high quality offices, the 5-star Shangri-La hotel with more than 200 rooms and suites that is due to open by November 2012, and 3 floors of signature restaurants. It will also feature exclusive super prime residential apartments and the top levels will consist of the capital’s highest public viewing gallery offering 360° views of the City of London.

Visitors to The Shard will be treated to stunning views of the capital and its surrounding countryside. And it is estimated that more than 1 million people a year will take advantage of the highest public viewing gallery in Europe.

The Shard is jointly owned by LBQ Limited, comprising the State of Qatar (the majority shareholder) and Sellar Property Group, with non-equity funding by Qatar National Bank. The State of Qatar has a strong commitment to invest and build in the UK as part of Qatar’s 2030 Vision, which is the country’s roadmap to achieving a sustainable, diversified economy, and The Shard forms part of this portfolio.

London Bridge Quarter is a 2m sq ft gross mixed-use development regenerating this part of London’s South Bank. The Shard and its sister development The Place are linked seamlessly with London Bridge Station through a new central plaza, public realm, bus station and train station concourse.

The Shard Tower The Shard Tower London Skyscraper design by RPBW
photos © Nick Weall

The Shard immediately adjacent to London Bridge Station will rest elegantly on the London skyline, providing a welcome new symbol for the world financial capital. The tower is also the second-tallest free-standing structure in the United Kingdom, after the 330-metre (1,083 ft) Emley Moor transmitting station

The Shard photos – exclusive to e-architect – from 1 Apr 2012

The Shard Tower Skyscraper building in England design by RPBW The Shard The Shard in London

The Shard is one of the most enigmatic buildings to adorn the London skyline in recent years. The vision of its creator, the much lauded Italian architect Renzo Piano was for a vertical ‘City in the Sky’; and the Shard at London Bridge Quarter with its mix of offices residences, hotel, restaurants and viewing platforms will herald a new era in high rise development for London and will become emblematic when all eyes look towards the city in 2012.

Skyscraper building in UK design by RPBW High-rise building in England design by RPBW The Shard Tower London The Shard Building London

The Shard replaces the Southwark Tower, a 1970’s building located on London Bridge Street. The Shard offers high density vertical development at a transport hub and will be the UK’s first truly mixed use tower, devised to interface with London on many levels.

The Shard Tower London The Shard Tower Tall building in England design by RPBW The Shard Building in London

The master architect, Renzo Piano, designed the Shard as a ‘vertical city’ that includes a public piazza, 586,509 sq ft (54, 488 sq m) of world class office space, an exclusive collection of residential apartments which will be the highest residential apartments in the UK and will be serviced by Europe’s first 5-star Shangri-La Hotel, retail space, restaurants, and a public viewing gallery. This will all ensure that it becomes the beating heart of a regenerated London Bridge Quarter.

The Shard Tower The Shard The Shard London by architect Renzo Piano The Shard

The Shard Tower London
photos © Nick Weall

The Shard photos – from 19 Mar 2012

The Shard Tower The Shard Tower
images : e-architect resource

Design: Renzo Piano Building Workshop with Ove Arup & Partners

25 Apr 2011

The Shard London Construction

The Shard : Letter to e-architect

I have the greatest privilege to watch this magnificent ediface take shape every day as I commute into London. On the whole we British to not take too well to change and are unacceptable of new ideas. The London Evening Standard Newspaper showed a skewed and highly doctored view of this building some weeks ago and suggested how shocking it was that it overpowered St Paul’s Cathedral. That was pure humbug and typifies English attitudes.

The Shard together with the Gherkin Building have brought Britain into the new century architecturally. For London these symbols signify a new era of hope and optimism for the future. All the detractors live in a bygone age of sentimentality and a lust for this countries past glory.

Renzo Piano is a wonderful architect who will leave a legacy of dynamism the like of which the mediocre Frank Geary will never hope to attain. I am delighted that every day The Shard lights up my day and I say to all those wretched people who cannot see the brilliance to open there eyes further.

Simon Weinberg

Do you agree with Simon or not? Comments / photos for the The Shard London Skyscraper page welcome :

The Shard tower – construction photos
The Shard Tower Building
tower photographs © Nick Weall

The Shard photos © Nick Weall – from 27 Feb 2011

The Shard London The Shard

11 Jan 2011

The Shard Tower

As the form starts to emerge there is growing consternation among many Londoners about its appearance. The latest nickname we’ve received is ‘Dalek’.

The siting of tall buildings at major transport nodes (here London Bridge, a major station feeding the city from the southeast) is a sound policy. But why super tall? What end is served by this macho rush for height?

Other than the sheer bulk, the actual design appears to lack elegance – a wide base and angles well off the vertical. In some ways it is too early to judge properly – the render towards the base of this page shows a slender tip that helps carry the rest of the building below. However in eschewing a slender form the architects have taken a path less travelled, but it is less travelled for good reasons.
Adrian Welch, editor

Comments welcome at info(at)

View from Tower Bridge looking west towards GLA building and the emerging Shard on left:
Tower Bridge view
photograph © Nick Weall

News Update, 25 Nov 2010

The Shard London – Tallest Tower in UK

Renzo Piano’s british skyscraper is now the tallest building in the UK – at 230 metres high. Eventually The Shard will be the tallest tower in Europe, at 306 metres high. Once the light gets better in Spring we will show new photos.

London Bridge Tower – The Shard

Renzo Piano, architect with Ove Arup & Partners


The Shard

Increasing density in central London, particularly near major public transport nodes, is key to London’s future development. Improving the efficiency of the public transport system and maximising the use of space around transport hub is essential. Given the location of The Shard above one of London’s key commuter stations, bus interchange and two main underground lines, a high density development was deemed not only possible but very desirable.

The Shard London
image of The Shard from Dec 2009

The Shard skyscraper – further information on the tower

The Shard Building : article from Aug 2012

London Shard architects : Renzo Piano Building Workshop

The Shard photos – external link to Andy Spain, photographer of The Shard photos at the top of this page

Location: London Bridge Station, London, England, UK

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Key London Building by Renzo Piano Architect
Central St Giles

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image : DBOX, courtesy Eric Parry Architects
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image courtesy of the architects
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Comments / photos for The Shard London Skyscraper page welcome

London Bridge Tower : The Shard – website :