This is an article about the Lloyd’s Building in London. The building has been praised for its innovative design, which features a steel and glass facade that was at the time a groundbreaking achievement. Completed in 1986, this building is an iconic piece of architecture and is home to the Lloyd’s of London insurance company.
Lloyd’s Building History
The site of the first Lloyd’s building (12 Leadenhall Street), designed by Sir Edwin Cooper, had been built in 1928. In 1958, as the market grew larger, a new structure was built down the street at 51 Lime Street (now the site of the Willis Building). Lloyd’s had taken up residence in both the Heysham and Cooper Buildings.
The 1970s saw Lloyd’s outgrow these two structures yet again, with plans to expand the Cooper Building. Richard Rogers was commissioned by Lloyd’s in 1978 to redesign the site, and the original 1928 structure on the western corner of Lime and Leadenhall Streets was razed to make way for the current one, which was opened officially by Queen Elizabeth II on November 18, 1986. The distinctive entrance on Leadenhall Street at 12 was kept and connects the 1986 building to the 1928 structure, which is rather out of place. The demolition of the 1958 building began in 2004 so that it could be replaced by the 26-story Willis Building.
Lloyd’s Building Design
Rogers was faced with the challenge of designing a building that would house both the conservative, traditional Lloyd’s and the new, more modern Lloyds Bank. The design had to be efficient and cost-effective as well. The final result is an atrium with four open sides, topped by a copper roof (the first time this material had been used in a major British building). This allows natural light to flood into the building and keeps it cooler in summer.
The Lloyd’s Building is also one of the few tall buildings in London not to have any steel columns in its construction; instead, the whole structure relies on reinforced concrete. This makes the Lloyd’s Building unusually flexible, able to withstand both earthquakes and bomb blasts. It also gives it a very distinctive appearance.
The Lloyd’s building is topped by a distinctive gold-domed roof that measures 88 meters (289 feet) from the ground. There are 14 floors in Lloyd’s structure, with cleaning cranes placed atop each service core for a total height of 95.10 meters (312 feet). Each floor may be modified by adding or eliminating walls and partitions, yielding a modular design. In 2008, the Twentieth Century Society called for it to be Grade I listed, and it was subsequently upgraded to this category.
Lloyd’s Building Post-9/11
The Lloyd’s Building underwent a £50 million renovation after September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in New York City. The main entrance on Leadenhall Street was closed to the public and the building was virtually sealed off from the outside world. Air conditioning and sprinklers were installed, and the entire structure was rewired and refurbished. The renovation was completed in 2003.
The Lloyd’s Building has been described as one of the most important buildings of the 20th century, not only for its architecture but also for what it represents: the global economy in all its complexity. It is an iconic symbol of London and is loved or hated by many people for its unique design.
Lloyd’s Building In popular culture
The Lloyd’s Building has been used as a location in several films, including Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, The Da Vinci Code, 28 Weeks Later, and Sherlock Holmes. It has also been used as a setting for many television series, including Doctor Who and Mr. Selfridge.
The Lloyd’s Building is a unique and iconic structure in the City of London. Designed by Richard Rogers, it was built in 1986 to house both the traditional Lloyds insurance market and the new Lloyds Bank. It is one of the very few tall buildings in London not to have any steel columns, making it unusually flexible and able to withstand earthquakes and bomb blasts. The renovation after September 11, 2001, made it more secure against terrorist attacks. The building has been used as a location for many films and television series.