Back to the Future

A year ago I made a CG model of central London for a university project (above) and recently I was commissioned to expand it in size by about 10 times. Luckily the new area didn’t need to be quite as detailed as the original, so it took a lot less time, but it still came out pretty well.

London 3a

The model includes a few buildings that are planned for the near future, although thanks to the whole credit thing a few of them are now delayed or on the verge of being canceled. At the time of the original modeling this was reflecting London as it was expected to look in 2011. It’s hard to say how far off this vision is now.

Bit of a shame, but at least the most exciting buildings look like they’ll still be built. We’ll just have to do without the mobile phone and the boomerang, and make do with a slightly smaller cheese grater.


Anyway, the model now stretches from Hyde Park and Buckingham Palace in the west all the way over to the Excel Centre and beyond in the east.

Click images to embiggen and see how many landmarks you can pick out! 😉


13 thoughts on “Back to the Future

    1. Little? 😉

      I think it took about two and a half weeks. It’s mostly made up of extruded splines, but it was quite fiddly work, so it took longer than I first imagined it would. Fairly accurate, though and lots of fun.

      Sure, have a go, just don’t think about texturing it all or you’ll go mad! 😀

  1. This is really cool, John! I love the old school model-looking perspective when looking at it as a whole. As if I could reach out and touch it!

    Great work and amazing attention to detail!

    1. Thanks, Greg! That table-top architectural model idea was just what I was going for. This was part of a larger project where the public would be able see what newly proposed buildings would look like if they were constructed, and give their opinions on them.

      Doing it in 3D would obviously let the city be viewed from any angle, and it was a good excuse for me to improve my skills! 🙂

  2. Hi John,

    Its an architecture project for uni and my site is soho london. I just need the area of shoho, picadilly, oxford street area for my site plan. I would really really appreciate that!

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