Crossrail Place Roof Garden

London, UK

The Crossrail Place Roof Garden in Canary Wharf is the first new building to open for Crossrail — London's new east-west rail link. Located above the new station, the garden is a celebration of the docklands maritime heritage, showcasing unusual plants from across the globe, encased beneath an intricate lattice roof.

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Designed to evoke a ship laden with unusual and exotic specimens from around the globe, the roof garden is encased within a complex ETFE lattice timber roof structure — designed by Foster + Partners — which wraps around the building like a shell with openings that encourage light penetration and natural irrigation. The semi‑permeable canopy structure helps to create a localised microclimate allowing the planting of more sensitive and rare species of plants.

The geographic location of the site — directly north of Greenwich — places the dock virtually on the Prime Meridian, dividing the western and eastern hemispheres and inspiring the division of the gardens and planting into two geographic zones.

Internally, the garden is organised around a single landscaped walkway, with multiple smaller paths that branch off in different directions, creating opportunities for chance encounters and providing visitors with a sense of true escape from their urban surroundings. The main walkway simplifies circulation and pockets of seating provide opportunities for visitors to convene and relax.

"The first benefit of Crossrail that Londoners are enjoying is a magnificent garden high above a station"

Ruth Slavid, Landscape Journal

Awards

  • 2016 Landscape Institute Award: Highly Commended
  • 2016 MIPIM Awards: Best Urban Regeneration
  • 2016 New London Award Winner: Transport and Infrastructure Category
  • 2018 European Garden Award