Southwark council this week gave planning permission to The Quill, a pair of interlinked tine-topped towers on Weston Street near London Bridge station, despite significant opposition from both local residents and a thumbs-down from Cabe.
Plans for the towers, which rise to a height of 110m and are intended as student accommodation, had earlier been slammed by Cabe, the outgoing design watchdog, as having an “ungainly form” and being “over complicated”. They might have a point: the vaguely sinister blade-like forms crowning the top, the portentous name and the fumbling attempt to connect conceptually to the local area, are reminiscent of some overambitious project in, say, Reading, not something that’ll be sitting (literally and figuratively) within the shadow of an elegant building like The Shard.
Southwark residents seemed similarly unimpressed. As reported by SE1, this week’s planning meeting was a standing room only-affair, with many of those in attendance opposing the scheme. Despite this, the committee voted 5-2 in favour of granting permission.