Love it or loathe it, London’s “cheesegrater” skyscraper, officially known as the Leadenhall Building, is one of the more distinctive additions to appear on the city’s skyline over the last few years. Completed in July 2014, the building is in the shape of a large wedge, with criss-crossing struts that add to the impression the building would be the ideal implement to shred a giant Edam.
This satisfying timelapse video by photographer Paul Raftery and filmmaker Dan Lowe condenses the tower’s construction into just three minutes, and makes a two year construction project to build London’s fourth tallest building look like a relatively straightforward affair.
Unfortunately, not included in the jolly video is the fact that giant bolts the size of a human arm keep falling off the structure: last week the Guardian reported that three have snapped or tumbled off since the building opened. Luckily, no one was hurt, but nonetheless dozens are now due to be replaced. Engineers have blamed the fault is due on “hydrogen embrittlement”, which is a fancy way of saying that, at high temperatures, hydrogen can weaken and split metal.
Architects, we’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: make buildings that stay in one piece. The rest is just decoration.