Battersea Loses Its Spark

By M@ Last edited 111 months ago
Battersea Loses Its Spark

Pigs might fly

It was always going to happen. The thrusting translucent chimney planned for Battersea riverside and dubbed 'the spark plug' has been nixed. The 250 m tower, designed by Rafael Viñoly, was removed from the masterplan after developers 'caved in' to public dissatisfaction with the scheme (involving some egregious photoshoppery) and criticism from the Mayor. Shame. Not only would the distinctive tube have made a novel landmark, but it would also have sucked fresh air into the development and thence generated power via a turbine system. It's back to the drawing board for Viñoly, who'll have to find a way to make the scheme economically viable without the huge power savings the chimney and ecodome would have brought. Now the pipe dream is over, we suspect Battersea Power Station is destined for yet further delays in its redevelopment.

Last Updated 28 February 2009


The scrapping of the £4 billion regeneration project’s centrepiece will come as a major embarrassment to the New York-based architect and his developer,

Surely it's London that should be embarrassed, for our fear of the new and the idiotic notion held by the Mayor, among others, that world heritage sites can be "damaged" by the glimpse of a nearby building.


Battersea Power Station has just been flogged from one "developer" to another, for decades now. Each "developer" actually has been content to sit on it and simply build its value by gaining consent for ever taller/denser development - then flog it before building anything. Ad infinitum.

Whilst one iteration of this might be normal in property developing, what's happened here is not. It's a bit of a joke, and it means that it'll probably have to be massively overdeveloped to turn a profit.


I wouldn't be surprised if developers are waiting for the power station to collapse or become 'structurally unsound' so as to enable them to demolish the lot and make use of the prime SW London land...