An innovative approach to construction above a major transport hub

The News Building, sister building to The Shard, is the international headquarters to some of the world’s most illustrious media brands to London Bridge Quarter, including Dow Jones, The Wall Street Journal, The Times, The Sunday Times, Times Literary Supplement, The Sun and HarperCollins. The building has direct access to London Bridge underground station as well as London Bridge Quarter’s new plaza and the unrivalled connections at London Bridge Station. It provides a seamless transition from station to workplace via escalators through a newly created boutique retail mall.

Designed by The Shard architect Renzo Piano with engineering experts WSP, The News Building is a feat of engineering mastery, requiring meticulous planning, innovative thinking and design solutions owing to its location immediately above the London Bridge tube station. The Northern line escalators, main ticket hall, Jubilee line escalators and platforms, and an escape shaft all sat directly beneath the site.

The solution was to cantilever over half of the 17-storey building from two concrete cores. However, the irregular shape of the site and limited space for the cores made it impossible to balance the loads. To overcome this issue, engineers used an innovative technique. The concrete cores were deliberately built to lean slightly.

According to Adams, ’The cores were pre-set 40mm to the west and 20mm to the north from their vertical lines during construction, so that subsequent permanent works loading brought the cores back to vertical at completion of shell and core construction.’

This movement will continue during life of the building in the form of ‘long-term creep’. ‘However, these predicted movements have been taken into account when delivering the design of the building elements such as lifts and cladding’, says Adams.

The News Building has been designed to deliver exceptional environmental credentials and, on the 14th floor, provides one of London’s largest roof terraces, with outstanding views.

Due to existing London Underground assets, only 45% of the site plan was available for foundations.JACK ADAMS, WSP

Energy utilisation was minimized by the adoption of energy efficient Building Services systems and a sophisticated building envelope incorporating automated solar shading and Building Integrated Photovoltaics. The overall services design reflects current trends and legislative requirements with respect to carbon emissions and on-site renewable energy generation. Throughout the design process the goal was to deliver an elegant structurally efficient building, appropriate for its position in close proximity to The Shard.

The News Building received ENR Best Global Office Project 2014 and ICE, London Civil Engineering Award 2013 and achieved a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating. The building’s active double skin ensures that only 12% of the sun’s heat passes into the building, therefore reducing the need for cooling whilst maximising natural daylight.  Carbon emissions are estimated to be 60% less than a comparable office building and equates to only 1.5% of an individual’s carbon footprint per year.

The London Bridge Quarter has helped to spearhead a renaissance in this important part of the capital, attracting scores of new businesses and creating thousands of jobs. THE MAYOR OF LONDON, BORIS JOHNSON
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