most architecture critics hate it:
The Independent described it as ‘one of the great walking nightmares of postmodern architecture, an aftershock that rose like Dracula’s castle from the ashes of the recession.’ According to the Guardian it looks ‘as close to Batman as the Middle Ages’ and Simon Bradley sees it as a ‘vast and bewildering American influenced flagrantly populist pile of peaks and gables’. The film 101 Dalmatians gave it the backhanded complement of use as the headquarters of Cruella De Ville. The City Guides architectural expert, Paul Taylor, feels that it is a rather dishonest building, as its fantastical complexity is achieved by appearing to stick on features that serve no practical and little symbolic purpose.And here is what I hate about contemporary architecture and its critics: what is wrong with making an office building "flagrantly populist"? Why shouldn't people like the buildings they work and live in? Why should people be forced to endure, day in and day out, various sculptural experiments with form because that is what architects admire? Architecture is not like painting or chamber music, something created and consumed by small groups of insiders. It is a mass art for the mass of the people. And, damn it, architects should strive to create buildings that the people who see them every day will enjoy.