‘Glass cube’ US embassy plans submitted
Plans for London’s new US embassy building have been submitted, despite leaving parties from both nations divided, thelondondailynews.comreports.
Hailed an ‘environmentally-conscious glass cube’, the building has been designed by US architect, Kieran Timberlake and proposals include three security ‘check point’ pavilions, landscaped gardens and a semi-moat.
These elements, a statement said, should serve to…
“create transition between the adjacent public realm and the controlled portions of the embassy grounds” without erecting fences.
Understandably, security for the building and its inhabitants is of ‘paramount concern’, according to an official.
Facing out onto Nine Elms Lane, London
The cube itself will house permanent art installations, one facing out to Nine Elms Lane and the other, a ‘luminous art wall’ that will wrap around the perimeter, according to bdonline.co.uk. It will use ‘crystalline’ external cladding for maximum view and daylight while the distinctive ‘ethylene-tetrafluroethylene scrim’ has been designed to shade the travelling sun.
Evoking the architecture of democracy
The building will sit on a four-sided colonnade, which is said to ‘evoke the architecture of democracy’.
Impressive as the images are, Mayor of London, Boris Johnson and government architectural watchdogs have said that the building lacks a “sufficiently civilising effect” on the local area. In response, US authorities claim the problem is due to “British snobbishness”.
Whether the plans are approved remains to be seen.
Author: Elizabeth Smythe Date Written: 17 Sept 2012