Regent Street, Europe's first purpose built shopping street (1830), has launched a walking tour App to illustrate an exciting and informative route along Regent Street. Designed by Applied Information Group (AIG) and developed by the Electric Mapping Company, the App can be downloaded from the Apple store for free. An accompanying printed guide can be picked up at some of the Regent Street stores or at regentstreetonline.com.
AIG developed the App using Living Map technology, which provides dynamic street-level mapping. Combined with the GPS technology accessible from the iPhone, this provides accurate and informative pedestrian-friendly wayfinding. The App was commissioned by The Crown Estate and Regent Street.
The App tour begins from the Duke of York's Steps, Pall Mall and finishes at the last remaining Nash building, All Souls Church, next to the BBC. It examines the external features and structures of buildings along the route, highlighting unusual details that provide clues as to how time and changing tastes have influenced the street.
Interesting locations along Regent Street that are referred to in the App include:
At Point 10 Habitat used to be known as the New Gallery, the principal gallery for the Arts and Crafts movement later re-fashioned as an 'electric theatre' or cinema and today the original fixtures and fittings are still visible including the original Wurlitzer organ and renaissance gallery.
Point 16 is Palladium House constructed in 1928/9, for the National Radiator Company and is a reduced version of the American Radiator building on Bryant Park, Manhattan. This is the only European building of Raymond Hood, the Art Deco style he used on this development was very fashionable in this period, following the Paris Exhibition of 1925.
Point 18 is Regent House formerly the site of the Hanover Chapel, now Apple, which is one of the most important buildings in Regent Street. When Regent Street was re-constructed the height of the new buildings was allowed to be built to the height of the chimneys of the former chapel. The beautiful Venetian glass mosaic can be seen above the doorway. Today the building has a beautiful modern glass interior and is once again a place of worship, the home of Apple.
The App complements the Nash Ramblas App, designed by AIG for the London Festival of Architecture and developed in partnership with RIBA London, The Royal Parks, English Heritage and The Crown Estate. This too is available as a free download from the Apple store.