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The strange beauty of architecture without people

Blog | By Harry Mount | Apr 04, 2020

King's Cross Station this week (Credit: Harry Mount)

One of the weird things about the lockdown is how architecture – necessarily the art for people, the art which all people have to see – has lost its human element.

Huge buildings like King's Cross Station (pictured), expressly designed to accommodate huge amounts of people, have now lost their purpose; well, almost – a few trains were still running from the near-empty station when I visited yesterday.

Suddenly, now these great buildings have lost their functional purpose, you can see them as works of art – almost like a model village.

How heartbreakingly beautiful London is, particularly on warm spring days like today: whether it's the gleaming white, Edwardian, art deco buildings next to the Oldie office; or the even more gleaming white, stucco Nash terraces I biked past this morning.

But, for all their beauty as artistic objects, how I long for them to be thronged with crowds again.