Foster + Partners designs bulbous tourist attraction tower for London

The Tulip would become part of the London skyline if it goes ahead

In addition, the Tulip will have viewing galleries as well as bars and restaurants offering panoramic views of the city.

Architecture firm Foster + Partners has revealed plans for an extravagant new tower in London featuring a bulbous viewing platform and rotating gondolas at the top.

After towers called the Gherkin, the Cheese Grater and the Walkie Talkie, plans have been unveiled for a new 1,000ft skyscraper in London dubbed the Tulip.

At the 984-foot-high observation deck, visitors would be able to take in 360-degree views of London and beyond. A new pocket park around the entrance that would include two green walls, and 284 bicycle parking spaces are also planned for The Tulip's ground floor pavilion.

The tower will be just a visitor attraction without any office space.

Sir Norman Foster said the structure, shaped like a bud on top of a 787ft stalk, is "in the spirit of London as a progressive, forward-thinking city". However, we wouldn't be surprised if there was pushback against this odd building becoming a permanent fixture of London's skyline, so time will tell.

Part of the More London Thames riverside development on the South bank of the river Thames London England with HMS Belfast on the left and the Walkie Talkie building the Nat West Tower the Cheesegrater or Leadenhall Building and the Gher
The Gherkin in London is poised to have a new neighbour designed by the same architects

Internal glass slides and spinning gondola pods fixed to the three sides of the facade would provide novel vistas over the city.

Around 20,000 free visits for state school children will be offered each year.

The project is being bankrolled by billionaire banker Jacob J Safra, who told the BBC: 'The Tulip's elegance and soft strength complements the iconic Gherkin'.

"We are confident in London's role as a global city and are proud to offer its schoolchildren a state-of-the-art classroom in the sky to appreciate London's history and dynamism", he said.

Construction could start as early as 2020 on the 305.3-metre-high visitor attraction which is due for completion by 2025.

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