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Cool Towers

Our slim, paired residential towers contrast with Canary Wharf’s metal-and-glass office skyscrapers to provide high-quality homes that harness sweeping views at an exceptional waterside location.

Residential identity

Responding to the evolving urbanism of Canary Wharf, the 55- and 50-storey towers are sited to reflect a gradual fall in building height away from the district’s commercial centre at One Canada Square. The carefully considered positioning of the towers also optimises daylight into apartments and opens up far-reaching views.

In contrast to a prevailing backdrop of sheer-faced office towers, Wardian is wrapped in stone-like-clad balconies that animate facades with domestic life and greenery. These terraces provide generous outdoor living space while protecting apartment interiors from solar gain, heat build-up and overlooking. Exterior proportions flow from internal spatial planning that prioritises quality of living spaces, aspects and views.

  • Concept sketch

    Concept sketch

  • The two towers of 50- and 55-storeys

    Two towers of 50- and 55-storeys

At riverside level, the building’s podium is lively and welcoming, responding to established pedestrian desire lines and contributing to waterside routes with community shopping, leisure amenities, cafés and an impressive entrance lobby sequence. In response to the particular site constraint of an elevated section of the Docklands Light Railway, these community elements transform an otherwise unused space beneath the tracks while reconnecting well-used pedestrian routes from the Isle of Dogs to the dockside.

  • Entrance


  • Entrance canopy detail

  • Ground floor riverside

    Ground floor riverside

  • Ground floor

    Ground floor

The Wardian Case—a 19th century innovation in botany

A spectacular shared space at the top of the east tower offers residents panoramic views of London and its river. Wardian’s 175-metre-high observatory is inspired by the work of 19th century physician Nathaniel Bagshaw Ward, who changed the world of botany through his Wardian Case—an early type of terrarium that provided a sealed, protective container for the plant species being imported into Europe by Victorian botanists.

Contemporary references to Ward’s groundbreaking technology are woven throughout Wardian’s architecture, including giant glass cases exhibiting arrangements of 100 different species of exotic species of trees, plants and flowers sourced from around the world.

  • Wardian case

    Wardian case

  • Amenity spaces are influenced by the botany of the Wardian Cases found through the building

  • Sky lounge terrace

    Sky lounge terrace

  • Sky lounge

    Sky lounge

  • Level 53

    Level 53

Green in practice

Anticipating the logistics of building on a constrained inner-city site, we designed the wrap-around balcony systems and façades for offsite fabrication, enabling efficient installation from within to minimise crane time.

Our towers employ highly efficient forms combined with orientation and setting out to maximise daylighting, offsetting a glazing ratio of 45% by projecting balconies of up to 1.8 metre deep on east and west elevations. As well as generous outdoor space, the wrap-around balconies provide air-conditioning. Operational projections indicate a 42% reduction in cooling load compared to unshaded facades—increasing to 55% by 2050 in line with projected global temperature rises.

  • The terraces provide private gardens to each resident

    The terraces provide private gardens to each resident

  • Typical residential floor layout

    Typical residential floor layout

  • Shading diagram

    Shading diagram

Client EcoWorld Ballymore
Location Canary Wharf, London
Size 78,679 sq m
Status Completed 2020
Homes 767 apartments
Environmental BREEAM Very Good, Code for Sustainable Home Level 4
Will Poole
Reinhold Schmaderer
Glenn Howells
Peter Mueller
Sophia Ceneda
Francesca Ghavami-Milnes
Any questions?