I was struck by the wide range of materials used in the landscape. The variety of pavers, bricks and stone used gave the ground plan more interest than I have seen in other cities. I did not experience the concrete jungle effect I usually associate with cities. I noticed interesting patterns and deliberate materiality changes which was a nice accent to the stunning architecture. The merging of the old and new materials was present as it is the architecture. One example of this was seen at Stonehenge where the walkway was a pervious plank system. Brilliant really, it gives the visitors a walking surface without producing the water runoff a traditional paver path would have. A similar material was used around Princess Diana’s memorial.
One thought on “Materials”
Wow! That is a great observation. I never really considered it until now, but you’re right. Something was very different about London compared to other cities. I think part of it has to also do with the many different materials the buildings are made of. You could easily see one building made of steel and glass right next to a stone or concrete building. And next to the concrete building could be a brick building. In London, the entire gamete of materials was used. With historic reasons, wood was not seen on the exterior of buildings, but surely enough it would come alive in many interiors. I think the many different materials act in the same way that colors do in appearing less “boring.” Many cities look very gray and dull using the same color (or shade of) and material. But in London, just the mix of materials along the skyline has surely livened the city.