Crossrail Place is nearly complete. One of the first major milestones of Crossrail is one of the new hubs for the new train service crossing London. It’s in Canary Wharf plotting another course for the docklands area that’s changed beyond recognition in a generation.
Stand underneath the skyscrapers in Canary Wharf and it’s hard to imagine it looking any different. Citigroup and HSBC headquarters tower above the streets and it’s a global financial hub with millions, if not billions, going through it on a daily basis.
It wasn’t always that way. London’s old port was dejected and unloved in 1981 when the then conservative government established the Docklands Development Corporation. Seeking backing from wealthy property tycoons building work began in 1988. Two years later its first skyscraper, One Canada Square, was built. It remained Britain’s tallest building until the Shard opened in 2010.
It wasn’t all plain sailing. When the financial crash hit in the 90s it affected Canary Wharf which ended up looking to the Middle East to support it financially.
That investment paid dividends with Canary Wharf now looking to expand even further. Crossrail will offer a major boost to Canary Wharf as it will increase the number of people working there, as well as the people living in the area. The first homes in the Wharf go on sale later this year. That will further help to boost the shopping and dining attractions on offer there as footfall increases.
Crossrail Place is the growing centre of that future aspiration. It’s timber and glass roof is a nod to the dock’s maritime history. It rises three storeys high and four storeys underground with a roof garden and walkways to create an outdoor space indoors. The exotic roof garden was opened on May Day as the development continues to countdown to its completion. The first trains are expected to stop at the hub in 2018.
For Clarendon, Canary Wharf has long been home to a selection of our serviced apartments. Clarendon Discovery Dock East and West as well as Clarendon Lanterns Court provide a centrally located waterside and Wharf facing modern apartments. At Discovery the apartments are one and two bedrooms, while at Lanterns Court the one bedroom apartments are walking distance from the rail network and main office complex.
As Canary Wharf expands so too does its diverse business base. What began as a market and trade in goods from across the sea became a financial hub and is now expanding into technology (FinTech) and residential. The evolution of Canary Wharf has been part a focus of continued and ambitious planning but also securing of investment and endorsement. Its transformation will be complete as it becomes the No. 1 address for those looking to work, and live, in London.