Are these the future towers of London?
13th June 2006

The future towers of London? Will the capital's skyline be transformed?

While cities like Manhattan and Shanghai are renowned for their soaring skyscrapers, London has managed to avoid having its views littered with multi-storey tower blocks and offices.

Our capital's architecture has sucessfully retained much of its old-world appeal. Until now.

With growing numbers of towers gaining planning permission, London's skyline could be about to change forever.

While the commercial benefits of these premises is clear, nobody seems to have demonstrated the effect these vast new buildings will have on the future lives of Londoners.

Which is where a new exhibition, run by future 'visualisers' Cityscape, comes in. The Architecture Foundation’s Airspace exhibition, imagines different versions of the London skyline and visitors are invited to vote for their favourite.

Pictured right is one such vision, called Londonhai, which shows what the capital would look like with the addition of some of Shanghai's towering architecture.

Richard Simmons, Chief Executive of the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, believes skyscrapers should be welcomed, but they will require careful planning and consideration.

He said: "I'd rather see these towers grouped around major transport hubs to help cut private car use. In London developers can afford to build the best and that's what we should be demanding."

The Architecture Foundation's Airspace exhibition is at 350 Euston Road, Regent's Place, NW1. It runs until July 14.