The Sky Garden @ 20 Fenchurch Street

This afternoon I had the great pleasure of ascending to the 35th floor of 20 Fenchurch Street aka The ‘Walkie Talkie’ building to marvel at the public Sky Garden and the views.  My 1.5 hour booked slot commenced at 3.30pm and so I was able to see it in sunshine and to witness the sunset.  Unfortunately I could’t hang around as I had another visit organised – a backstage tour of the Barbican Theatre.

I have followed the progress of the Walkie Talkie building for a fair while from the deconstruction of the original building on the plot (an interesting subject in itself) to the raising of the frankly massive concrete core and the subsequent frame, envelope and finishes to completion.  I don’t work in London but visit fairly regularly and so its rapid upward progress was very evident.

In another strange coincidence I was offered a job many years ago which would have resulted in my working on the construction of the building.  Alas I turned the job down – partly as I am not at all good with heights and partly due to the state of the commercial building market at that time.  Indeed soon after the project was mothballed for a couple of years so my appointment may not have lasted that long had I taken it!

Anyway – to my visit earlier.  Visitors  to the Sky Garden gain access from the rear of the building and after the now quite normal bag scanning security checks we were whisked at ear popping speed up to the 35th floor which we arrived at in no time at all. Despite my fear of heights I was okay with going up to the 35th floor as I spent a few weeks at the end of last year working on the 33rd floor of Euston Tower and so have become a little de-sensitised to the lifts and the height.

More text to come… For now here are some photos in the order taken 🙂

I have now uploaded the best of my photos to my Google+ website and you can find them here.  All photos are copyrighted and may not be reproduced for any reason whatsoever without express written permission from me.  Otherwise – enjoy

Google+ Album

For the record – I was bowled over by the Sky Garden.  It is an amazing place.

The ground level back door but still quite posh entrance
Fantastic living wall opposite the entrance with sleeping areas for homeless people
Taken this shot a few times and LOVE IT!
Said Walkie Talkie Building with Sky Garden just peering over the top
The entrance area and cafe on the south side. Can’t get over how much this looks like an architects render from a design
Roof detail and photo-voltaics (and feet) above the lower (south) terrace
Another view of the lower terrace. Revolving doors lead to outside but this was closed due to high winds
The virtually deserted upper (north) terrace area
Detail of the roof and glazing in the north west corner
Looking down on the west stairs with glimpse of the gardens
Looking down and south from the terrace for the lower of the two restaurants
Me. There.
Another view of the upper terrace
Another view of the lower terrace
Minature effect view east toward Canary Wharf with C2C railway
The two restaurants which I will correctly name in due course
Half way up the east stairs looking east to Canary Wharf
Visitors gazing east from the upper terrace
Plantrooms at the very top of the adjacent Cheesgrater Building
Me. There. Again
Miniature shot of the lower terrace
Looking east as the light faded
The three pretenders to the throne. Natwest Tower. Cheesgrater. Gerkin.
Looking west in the fading light. Love this shot.



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