Liverpool’s waterfront – ruined or updated?

If you follow the view of the blogosphere, the Mann Island developments buildings, together with the new Merseytravel ferry terminal building (that also doubles as the Beatles Story’s second outlet) and Liverpool Museum, amount to nothing less than the wholesale destruction of the Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Indeed, that’s what architects seem to think too.

Such judgements are necessarily subjective, and though I’m reserving judgement for now on the new Liverpool Museum, I can’t possibly see how the Mann Island Developments buildings or new ferry terminal can be judged to be sympathetic to the surrounding area.

In some ways I quite like the Mann Island buildings, but they seem to me totally at odds with the surrounding areas, as if two damaged Borg cubes have suddenly crashed down to Earth on the site of the ill-fated Fourth Grace.

The buildings, along with the museum, almost completely obscure the view of the Three Graces from the viewpoint of the Albert Dock, and add an intrusive full stop to the waterfront’s narrative from Birkenhead.