Remember burning ants with a magnifying glass as a kid? Now imagine the ants are cars and the magnifying glass is a 37-story building in London.
A skyscraper, nicknamed “Walkie Talkie” because of its shape, is causing quite a stir in the U.K. this week. When Martin Lindsay parked his Jaguar in front of 20 Fenchurch Street, he didn’t expect to come back and find bits of it had melted. The BBC recounts the tale:
Mr Lindsay, director of tiling company Moderna Contracts Ltd, said: “I was walking down the road and saw a photographer taking photos and asked, ‘what’s happening?’
“The photographer asked me ‘have you seen that car? The owner won’t be happy.’
“I said: ‘I am the owner. Crikey, that’s awful.’”
The wing mirror, panels and Jaguar badge had all melted, Mr Lindsay said.
“You can’t believe something like this would happen,” he added. “They’ve got to do something about it.
“It could be dangerous. Imagine if the sun reflected on the wrong part of the body.
“On the windscreen, there was a note from the construction company saying ‘your car’s buckled, could you give us a call?’”
In a joint statement, developers Land Securities and Canary Wharf said: “We are aware of concerns regarding the light reflecting from 20 Fenchurch Street and are looking into the matter.
The Walkie Talkie has also been melting other objects, including a plastic lemon in a display case and a section of a hair salon’s rug. Apparently, the building reflects light at such intensity only two hours a day during summer, when the sun hits it at a certain angle. For now, the city has blocked off the three parking spots in front of the building, but the construction company is still looking for a long-term solution. The owner of the Jag received £946 ($1,469) as compensation for the damage done, and, of course, a polite apology.
—Posted by Natasha Hakimi
MyParadiseLost (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Because of its curved architecture, the Walkie Talkie is melting objects in its vicinity.