1. ITV Report

Shard laser show opens Europe's tallest building

The Shard's lasers flash across London, with Tower Bridge seen in the foreground/ Photo: Nick Gardner

Europe's tallest building has been officially unveiled in central London.

The Shard's tapered design and glass panelling have already made the skyscraper one of the capital's most noticeable landmarks.

Just yards from the banks of the River Thames in Southwark, it seems to pierce the sky as it shoots more than 1,000ft into the air.

The tower, designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, will contain offices, exclusive residences, a luxury hotel, restaurants and a viewing gallery across 72 floors which can be occupied.

There are a further 15 levels which make up the "spire" - six of which have the potential to be used, with another nine exposed to the elements.

Members of the public watch the Shard laser show from Millennium Bridge in London. Credit: Ross Barber

The 1,016ft (309.6m) skyscraper was inaugurated by the prime minister and minister of foreign affairs of Qatar, Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabr Al-Thani, and The Duke of York.

Andrew said after pressing a black button to mark the unveiling:

"I'm extremely pleased to see that this is going to give this quarter of London a huge new boost.

A laser show projected from the Shard skyscraper on the South Bank, London, seen from Parliament Hill. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
Crowds gather on Parliament Hill in north London to watch the laser show. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

"And I hope that the people who will come and work here and live around here will truly appreciate not only the hard work that the entire team have put together, but also they'll recognise the relationship and investment that has been put in by both the UK and Qatar.

"And I'm sure that we would all be extremely glad if this could be repeated in a number of other areas across the UK."

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