Friday, March 2

Maps Anyone ?

I snap the City of London Information Center in Saint Paul's Yard, across the street from the Wren cathedral.  The structure went up in 2007 , designed by make architects. It is pretty funky, too, standing-out in old London yet not distracting from the church. So bravo for that.

The architects set out their stall (from the website):

"A folded metallic envelope wraps 140m2 of internal accommodation, lending the building an angular profile and an air of lightness akin to that of a paper aeroplane. This aerodynamic effect is enhanced by the sloping roof which rises from 3m at the rear staff entrance point to 5m at the public entrance. The large spans and cantilevers required have been achieved using a steel frame braced by a structural ply skin and clad in stainless steel panels. This solution minimises the thickness of the structural envelope - an important consideration in a building of this scale. In addition, the sensitive and restricted nature of the site made a rapid construction method highly desirable. Accordingly, the steel frame was prefabricated in 2 separate sections which were craned onto the site at night and assembled over the course of a couple of days.

"The structure is clad in a specially manufactured system of 220 pre-finished stainless steel panels. This subtly reflective surface provides a striking counterpoint to the stonework of St Paul’s, and the panelisation of each elevation emphasises the crisp angularity of the folded form. By contrast, the building interior is lined with a tessellation of 174 vivid yellow panels formed from Trespa, a recycled timber product. This bright and compact interior conceals a host of high-tech equipment necessary for providing a state-of-the-art information service to visitors. Public facilities are located at the widest part of the triangular plan, and are separated from the staff facilities beyond by a specially-designed information desk.