Irvine Sellar's £1bn "Shard of West London" skyscraper just lost 51 storeys - it's now the Cube of West London

Emma Haslett
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The Paddington Cube will "hover" above the ground (Source: Sellar Paddington Limited)

Remember the so-called "Shard of West London", the £1bn, 65-storey tower in Paddington planned by Shard developer Irvine Sellar?

That's just received a bit of a downgrade, after the company behind it unveiled new plans for an office block - which is 51 storeys smaller.

The newly-styled, 14-storey Paddington Cube, on the site of a former Royal Mail sorting office next to Paddington Station, will no longer have the 200 homes originally planned for the site (admittedly that particular announcement could have been better timed).

Instead, the 360,000 sq ft building, which will still be designed by Shard architect Renzo Piano, will feature office, restaurant and retail space, as well as 1.35 acres of public space. And at £775m, it's a bargain.

"The new proposals follow extensive consultations with local residents and stakeholders conducted over the past four months. It became clear from those meetings that a lower-rise building would be preferred together with a range of amenities and vastly improved transport connectivity," said developers Sellar Paddington Limited and Great Western Developments.

The new building is 14 storeys

“When you exit the station you will see a clear floating cube ‘levitating’ above the ground,” said Piano.

“We are obsessed with lightness and have given the building a sense of flying above the ground and defying the laws of gravity. The façade will be crystalline, like a fine lace of steel and glass in a clear pattern like the beautiful arches and skylights of Brunel’s station.”

Sellar added that will "give visitors to London something special to welcome them".

"Paddington is an international gateway to the capital. We want to deliver a beautiful building and a dynamic new public space that will become a destination in its own right." Aaah.

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