June 5, 2014
Around 900 people were evacuated from the Shard this morning, following reports that smoke was coming from the basement of the 1,004ft-high building. Seven fire engines and around 50 firefighters were sent to the building, following the alert at around 10.30. The smoke had begun to dissipate by around 11.45, and this afternoon London Fire Brigade announced it was set to allow tenants to re-enter the premises. No injuries have been reported at the tallest building in Western Europe, winner of the European Award in the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitats (CTBUH) Best Tall Building Worldwide competition; however there were complaints that office workers had to walk down hundreds of steps during the evacuation. Along with retail and hospitality tenants, the Shard has a number of office occupants, including investment bank Duff & Phelps and the venture capital group Foresight.
It was announced earlier this year that hospital group HCA is to occupy 70,000 sq ft. on levels 4, 5 and 6 of the Shard, with plans to commence fit out works later this year and media group Al Jazeera is fitting out 27,700 sq feet of studio space on level 16 of the building where it plans to begin broadcasting from late summer.