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West India Quay

Steel Architecture Inspirations from Canary Wharf

If a remake of the iconic Blade Runner was to be made, Canary Wharf would offer a great film set. It may lack the Broadway feeling of Japanese cities with their bright lights,  which look more like the Los Angeles of Ridley Scott’s film, but futuristic architecture is the trademark of this area of London.

Built on the Docklands, it is mostly home to glass skyscrapers packed of offices, but it’s growing as a place of cultural interest.

The area next to the West India Quay’s old warehouse, now a complex of apartments and restaurants, was the place where street art duo 3D Joe and Max won the Guinness World Record for the longest and deepest 3D street painting in 2011.

The presence of the DLR, the automated light rail system going above the Docklands, suits the architectural taste in the area. Steel becomes the predominant material also it supports the railway crossing the waters of the Thames. Building the station in the style of London’s Underground ones, with their long ceramic corridors would have not been 1987. This year is notable in architecture for the completion of buildings like One Liberty Place in Philadelphia, One Atlantic Centre in Atlanta and the Metropolitan tower in New York.

The entrance of the tube station follows this trend of mixing glass and steel, offering a view on the surrounding buildings (in glass and steel as well) while going up the high staircases.

Even smaller entrances are built with this concept in mind. Everything in Canary Wharf is an occasion to discover modern architecture in a timeless city like London.

The area may remind of a modernistic Venice, thanks to the many channels to walk across. The Bridge of Sighs, though, leaves space to more contemporary styles. It is the Renaissance of the banker man.

This trend is so deep that even a hotel like the Hilton built its Rotherhithe with a visible steel structure and an additional one as decoration on the roof.

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