Sky Garden - 20 Fenchurch Street
The Sky Garden sits on the very top three floors of the 37 storey 20 Fenchurch Street building in the City of London.
Designed by Uruguayan architect Rafael Viñoly and affectionately known locally as The Walkie-Talkie because of its distinctive shape, the building is 160 m (525 ft) making it the fifth tallest completed building in the City of London. We are used to undertaking landscaping challenges on a grand scale, however, the installation of London’s highest public garden was an altogether different challenge. We decided very early on that the success of this scheme would be down to careful and considered planning.
It would be necessary to take time to select the plant material well in advance and monitor their growth regularly. Nursery visits would be required to Spain, Sicily, Italy, Holland, Germany and New Zealand. Some plants would be brought into the UK early; others would be held in Europe and brought to site on a “Just in Time” basis.
Due to the complexity associated with the installation of the roof structure, the construction programme started to slip. In order to assist programme recovery, the landscape installation programme was cut from 18 weeks to 9 weeks. This necessitated working two shift patterns, day and night, seven days a week. As elevator time was to be in high demand by all trades working on the scheme, we appointed a night crew to take delivery of materials and distribute them to the required work areas. Every manoeuvre was carefully timed and co-ordinated into a micro managed programme.