The Battersea Redevelopment is now gathering pace. It is very large scale, involving over 22,000 homes – and with more on other adjacent and nearby sites that are selling themselves as “Battersea” or “Nine Elms”.
Mind – the development is being marketed in places like Hollywood and Hong Kong – so is not much for serving local need. Such redevelopment schemes are so very expensive and with developers expecting very high returns that they are increasingly just expensive commodities – like say Jaguar and Range Rover cars – that are sold to whichever well-off buyers can afford them. London will, of course, get some nice architecture and some of the homes will be owner occupied by Londoners so maybe it is not much different to the original development of areas like Belgravia. But there won’t be many residents who are nurses, cleaners, sandwich bar staff, bus drivers etc.
My first photo and another one show the first of the four power station chimneys well on its way to being fully demolished (and it is now further down since I took these photographs). As soon as it is down they will start to re-build it to look identical and start demolishing the next one.
Embassy Gardens is (as you would expect) next door to the new US Embassy – and I have shown a photo of the site huts at the embassy building. I understand it is to be surrounded by a moat…
One of my pictures of the Battersea redevelopment shows one of the forthcoming attractions which is to be what I think is to be called the Flower Building by Frank Gehry and this will stand opposite a new building by Norman Foster. The Riverlight Buildings that I show in another photograph are by Richard Rogers – so the Battersea redevelopment is certainly getting the treatment!
I hope that all these swanky buildings will look as good in 50 years time as the former LCC block that I show just off Battersea Park Road.
At the Vauxhall end of the site is to be a cluster of skyscrapers. One of which – St George’s Wharf Tower is shown on the photograph with a red brick building on the left and to the right hand side of the tower a brown smoked glass block – one time home of the New Covent Garden Market Authority – that is now being demolished to make way for two residential towers – one taller than the St George’s Wharf tower – being built by Wanda – the largest Chinese property developer.
I shall return to the Battersea site again, of course as it develops.
My other photographs this month are a miscellany – and mostly self explanatory – but it is worth mentioning the building in Baker Street – home of a property company called London and Regional designed by Make Architects. This address (but a different building) was at one time the Head Office of Marks and Spencer.
By the way, you might like to look at this link to a new architecture studio in London, specialising in contemporary, sustainable small scale projects sheltonhawkins.
Finally I show a picture of Battersea Dogs Home – not an architectural masterpiece – but certainly a masterpiece of animal welfare – so worth a showing.