1 Undershaft, nicknamed the “Trellis” due to its resemblance to a garden trellis, is to become the second largest building in London after the Shard after receiving planning approval.
The 305m high building will be built on the site of the Aviva Tower, making it the largest building in the Square Mile.
The development was approved at the City of London Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee following a vote of 19-2. The project will involve the demolition of the existing tower, followed by the development of the 73 storey building.
Initial plans proposed an even taller building, but worries about the effect it might have on City Airport led to the structure’s height being reduced by 4.7m.
The new tower has been commissioned by Singapore-based Aroland Holdings, which is currently developing tall buildings in capital cities around the world. The approved design has been delivered by Eric Parry, the architect behind the acclaimed St Martin-in-the-Fields project in London’s Trafalgar Square and the new City of London office development at 10 Fenchurch Avenue.
WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff are providing full multidisciplinary engineering consultancy services.
The new development will provide 130,000m2 of office space, as well as more than 2,000m2 of retail space. An estimated 10,000 workers will work in the building when completed.
The top of the building will feature a free public viewing gallery, which will be served by dedicated lifts. The gallery will also include a restaurant.
Aroland Holdings and the Museum of London are working together to explore the creation of new learning spaces at top of the tower to support the museum’s charitable aims.
1 Undershaft amongst other Square Mile skyscrapers
“We can’t wait to embark on an exciting journey to create a genuinely unique perspective on the capital from the top of the City of London’s tallest tower. The space will be a magical learning experience for all Londoners to learn about the past, present and future of the city from this vantage point,” said Museum of London director Sharon Ament.
The building’s base will create space for a larger public square and the reception will be elevated, allowing the public to walk freely beneath the building.
In addition, a new retail gallery will create 2,000m2 of retail space for restaurants, cafes and shops around an open lower court, accessed from the public square.
“We are delighted to have received planning consent for this iconic building at the heart of London,” said Parry. “1 Undershaft represents the very best of British architecture and will set new standards for the City in terms of comfort, quality and environmental sustainability.
“It is a vote of confidence in the City of London. 1 Undershaft will crown the cluster of tall buildings and will be a tower London can be truly proud of. This is a really exciting opportunity for Londoners and the team behind 1 Undershaft are thrilled to get started on the next phase of the project.”
City of London Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee chairman Chris Hayward said: “I’m delighted that we have approved 1 Undershaft. It is a truly unique building that fits in well with the City’s history, as well as our future ambitions for growth.
“This development shows the high levels of investor confidence in London’s status as a global city following our decision to leave the European Union.”