Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
CTBUH UK Learns About "A Day in the Life of The Shard"
June 26, 2017

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LONDON – An audience of 100 streamed into the Warwick Business School on the 17th floor of the Shard, to hear about the complexities and challenges of operating the tallest building in Western Europe. A Day in the Life of The Shard was chaired and introduced by CTBUH Trustee & UK Chair Steve Watts, Partner, Alinea Consulting. A further introduction was provided by CTBUH Executive Director Antony Wood, who examined the The Shard in the worldwide context of tall buildings.

Watts recognized the achievements of Irvine Sellar, who will always be remembered for his determination “against all odds” to create and develop The Shard – a building that has changed London’s skyline forever. The fruits of Sellar’s drive to create a diverse and vibrant community, and provide multiple areas in which the public and occupiers could experience the building and its magnificent views–was evident throughout the presentations. The daily challenges of management, technical operations, and security protocols for a mixed-use building set over one of the busiest transport hubs in the country were outlined.

The event was chaired and introduced by CTBUH Trustee & UK Chair Steve Watts (left), Partner, Alinea Consulting, with an additional introduction and context provided by CTBUH Executive Director Antony Wood (right).

Real Estate Management (UK) Limited (REM) is the asset manager of The Shard. A specialist team of REM employees and appointed service partners manage the building at Shard Quarter, the estate comprising The Shard, The News Building, and the residential development Shard Place.  

Danny Lemon, General Manager, Shard Quarter; John Scott, Head of Technical Services, Shard Quarter; and Andy Baker, Head of Security, REM, presented what A Day in the Life of The Shard looks like from their own areas of expertise. 

Danny Lemon gave a summary of the journey so far, providing a brief history of The Shard from its concept and design, through to construction, and finally its operations as a vertical city today. His passion for service excellence is shown through attention to detail and the creation of an exclusive “once in a lifetime visit” to the iconic tower. Lemon’s insightful statistics illustrated the enormous implications and challenges of having 26 floors of office, restaurants, a five-star hotel, residential apartments, and a public viewing gallery in one 73-story building. Managing the tallest building in the Western Europe – housing 30 companies from a range of sectors, welcoming 4,000 visitors to the restaurants each day, hosting over 50 events a month, and keeping 11,000 façade glass panels clean – keeps the team busy.

Shard Quarter General Manager Danny Lemon (left) and Head of Technical Services John Scott (right) presented what A Day in the Life of the Shard looks like from their own areas of expertise.
Andy Baker, Head of Security, REM, contextualized his philosophy of “being on top of everything” in terms of building management and security response at The Shard.
Following Lemon’s presentation, Scott discussed The Shard from a safety perspective, outlining the challenges in terms of fire safety and risk assessment. His talk provided valuable information on proactive fire management, detection, and alarm systems, egress strategies, and other unique features such as the tailored voice alarm. His expertise and his management philosophy are part of what makes The Shard a safe place to work and visit. He also spoke of the challenges of designing a fire plan in an evolving building, calling on the example of retrofitting adjoining staircases between tenant floors when an occupier takes more than one floor.

Next, Andy Baker, Head of Security, REM, contextualized his philosophy of “being on top of everything” – an ideology that was outlined throughout the talk. His policy of being continuously aware and informed together with his expertise from his career in the police force has enabled him to respond to potential global and local threats. Discussing a number of real incidents and responses showcased the efficiency of the building’s management team and the strength of relationships with businesses and organizations in the local community.

The event concluded with a thanks to attendees, speakers, hosts, and sponsors (Alinea, Arup, Mace, Turner & Townsend, and WSP).

In the evening, Wood, Watts, and Alinea Consulting’s Senior Research Analyst, Rachel Coleman, and Research Assistant Analyst, Magdalena Tuta, joined a drinks reception at Aqua Shard, where the guests and occupiers of the building met for drinks, canapés, and networking. The group was given the exclusive opportunity to go up to the very top of the building, accompanied by Scott.