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The Lloyd's Building

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The Lloyd's Building
One Lime Street, Lloyd's of London, The Lloyds Building


Structure in General

high-rise building
existing [completed]
structural expressionism
active heating (unspecified)


commercial office


  • Architecturally, the Lloyd's Building draws heavily on architect Richard Rogers' earlier Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.
  • At the heart of the building is a huge atrium, 14 floors and 76 meters (249 feet) tall.
  • On the ground floor of the atrium sits the Lutine Bell, salvaged from the French frigate La Lutine which surrendered to the British in 1793. The bell is rung once for good news and twice for bad, and the expansive atrium carries the sound to everyone in the building.
  • This was the first in a trio of City office buildings designed by Richard Rogers; it was followed by 88 Wood Street in 1998, and the Lloyd's Register of Shipping Building in 2000.
  • Inside the glass and steel hides an unexpected treasure: the classical Italianate wood-panelled Adam Room. Used by the Council of Lloyd's, it was designed by Robert Adam in 1763 and was originally the dining room of Bowood House until brought to Lloyd's piece by piece.
  • Essential services are sited on the exterior of the building in six vertical towers, thus creating large and uninterrupted spaces within.
  • The building's height rises from seven storeys on the south elevation through a series of terraces to its full height on the north side.
  • Due to its original glazing system the building emits a warm glow visible from the exterior and is even more spectacular at night.
  • The building's extravagant design led to numerous awards, including Civic Trust Award, Concrete Society Commendation and Financial Times 'Architecture at Work' Award in 1987, crowned with RIBA Award in 1988 certifying its success and recognition.
  • The building takes its name from one Edward Lloyd who founded a coffee shop on this site in 1688, from where maritime insurance was conducted.
  • The external windows have triple layered solar control glass with a ventilated cavity enabling it to refract back artificial light into the interior. This helps to decrease the need for light after sunset.
  • The 12 external glass lifts were the first in Britain.
  • 33,510 cubic metres of concrete were used in the building's construction, as were 12,000 square metres of glass, 30,000 square metres of stainless steel cladding, 5,000 square metres of anodised aluminium frame and 2,000 square metres of painted steel.
  • Incorporated into the building are 1,400 kilometres (864 miles) of window gasket seals and 80 kilometres (49 miles) of ducts and pipes.
  • The total possible underwriting area is 19,000 square metres.
  • The Lloyd's Building is one of the finest examples of British High-Tech architecture and has been described as a 'mechanical cathedral'.
  • The building was awarded the Eternit 8th International Prize for Architecture (special mention), 1988.
  • The building won the PA Award for Innovation in Building Design and Construction, 1988.
  • The imposing rostrum on the ground floor which houses the famous 'Lutine Bell' is fashioned from mahogany and was brought to the current building from the previous Lloyd's Building of 1928 designed by Sir Thomas Edwin Cooper.
  • Part of the original Sir Thomas Edwin Cooper-designed Lloyd's Building's retained façade along Leadenhall Street is incorporated into the current structure.
  • Construction costs at completion were around £75,000,000.
  • The building was opened by Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh on November 18th 1986.
  • The building is noted for its multi-storey, free-standing escalator array within the atrium; the mechanisms within are exposed and are punctuated in yellow.
  • Awarded the Supreme Award for Structural Engineering Excellence, the Award's highest accolade.
  • The atrium was influenced by Joseph Paxton's Crystal Palace of 1851.

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More Information


1 Lime Street
12 Leadenhall Street
1 Lime Street
City of London
United Kingdom

Technical Data

312.01 ft
312.01 ft
287.99 ft
221.00 ft
14.30 ft
9.81 ft

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Features & Amenities

  • One of the city's famous buildings
  • City landmark
  • Doorman is available
  • Floodlighting at night
  • Handicapped accessible
  • Raised floors are available
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