Coal Drops Yard

1043 Reviews

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Things to do


Date of travel

September, 2021

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I’ve already reviewed “Coal Drops Yard”: behind Kings Cross Station, but as we’re frequent visitors, and it’s still being developed, there’s always something new to see.

Once again, we started at the Visitors’ Centre. Here, there are two models mentioned in my earlier “review”: one of Coal Drops Yard and one of the wider area. The latter, has now been replaced by a more detailed, illuminated model. It’s a great starting point for a first-time visitor as it gives a brilliant perspective of the whole site. As before, an enthusiastic lady was more than willing to tell us about the area. This time, she focused on the Google building, still in the process of being built. This will be relatively low level at 11 storeys but will be longer horizontally than The Shard is vertically, hence its informal nickname of The Landscaper. It will have both a running track and swimming pool on the roof top terrace for the 7,000 Googlers who will work there. I suspect it wasn’t a co-incidence that it was designed to be bigger.

Google already occupy a relatively large building and three others are owned by their subsidiary Google DeepMind who deal in artificial intelligence.

Another new feature for us was a visit to the “New London Architecture”: (NLA) office, actually situated in Coal Drops Yard. Here was another massive model, covering 195 square km of London’s central area with the Thames flowing through it. The 240,000 buildings were either in grey or white: the former were already in existence, whilst the latter had either been built since 2012 or were still in construction. None of the landmarks were marked and although a paper map pointed out some of the major areas, we used the Google map on our phone to identify the areas less familiar to us. The map took 5,400 hours to make and involved at team of 25. The green spaces of Regents Park, Hyde Park and St. James Park were all easy to spot, but what surprised us was the large size of a park near to us, Victoria Park in Hackney.

Another new development was the new red Esperance Bridge over Regent’s Canal, whilst the “Camley Street Nature Reserve”: will open in October.

Helen Jackson

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