London’s “Walkie Talkie” building, a 37-story glass tower with a price tag of $311 million. It is under scrutiny due to its blinding glare. The structure’s unique design reflects sunlight intensely, melting parked cars and even igniting a minor fire in a nearby shop. Workers in the vicinity are complaining about the discomfort caused by the brilliant light.
Land Securities PLC and Canary Wharf PLC, the developers behind the project, are actively addressing the issue. They are exploring potential solutions, including applying a chemical to the building’s glass exterior to reduce the glare. They are committed to working closely with local businesses and authorities to find both short-term and long-term remedies.
One Jaguar owner received compensation of nearly $1,555 after parts of their car were deformed by the concentrated sunlight. The owner, Martin Lindsay, expressed frustration, noting that the damage occurred within just a few hours of parking in the area.
Local businesses also suffered due to the building’s glare. The intense sunlight melted paint, tiles, and even set a doormat on fire in some shops.
Architect Rafael Vinoly designed the “Walkie Talkie” building, which is expected to be completed by 2014. While the design has architectural merit, the issues stemming from its sunlight reflection highlight the need for careful consideration of practical implications.