How The View From Waterloo Bridge Has Changed Beyond Recognition

M@
By M@
How The View From Waterloo Bridge Has Changed Beyond Recognition

Waterloo Bridge is widely acclaimed for its panoramic views of London. The prospect towards the Square Mile is particularly striking... providing you're not one of those people who gets all angry at skyscrapers.

Now here's the same view according to the interpretation panel:

Spot the differences?

St Paul's still stands proud, over to the extreme left. The OXO Tower is there, centre right on both images. More or less everything else has changed.

We're guessing the information panel is from around 2004, shortly after completion of the Gherkin. That building — proper name 30 St Mary Axe — was the second tallest in the City at the time. Today, it is barely visible among the growing cluster. Even Tower 42, once the tallest building in Britain, is hardly distinct as an individual tower any more.

All change, too, south of the river. The boomerang profile of 1 Blackfriars now dominates the view. Guy's Hospital, clearly labelled on the information plaque, is now obscured by the Shard. The South Bank Tower — the most prominent structure on the old plaque, over to the right — has since grown by another 10 floors.

Even the bridges have altered, although that level of detail can't be seen in the plaque. Blackfriars rail bridge has since gained a roof and some width.

Just to re-emphasise, the gap between the two views is, at most, 14 years. This website might very well be older. In fact, the view would have been largely unchanged until 2007 when the Heron Tower was completed. So that huge step up in the skyline is just a decade in the making.

What changes might we see between now and the middle of the century?

Last Updated 14 June 2018

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