In response to Richard Evans' letter, 'Fosters' steel structure for GLA is inefficient' (AJ 15.3.01), I would like to point out that it is not only the steelwork that will cause problems: there are a whole host of other reasons that give me cause for concern.
The building was originally commissioned for the Greater London Authority by the Government Office for London, and the GLA had no part in the initial consultation as to what kind of building was required.
Consequently, Foster's new building is barely big enough for the core GLA staff. When the GLA tried to find an alternative site it was told in no uncertain terms by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions that the extra costs arising from the move (some £12.8 million in the first year) would only be underwritten by government if they went to More London Bridge. This is the sort of choice Henry Ford offered - any colour car you like as long as it is black. This was to be a flagship building for the government - it may be the next Dome scenario.
Away from politics, there are other issues, such as the complex cooling system, the environmental impact, cleaning and heating that are still to be answered satisfactorily.
This may be the catalyst for regeneration in the London Bridge area, but at what cost to Londoners?
Robert Neill, Conservative Group Leader, Greater London Authority