New architecture in London presents a richly facetted range of contemporary urban designs. Social and political forces require more than just cosmetic packaging for new buildings. The facade as a public face plays a complex role here. While facades used to perform a static, representative guide, the requirements today focus on communication and interactivity. "Scratching the Surface" surveys the current state of affairs and documents today's technical possibilities. The book - which can be used as a guide due to its handy format - shows state-of-the-art facade construction. Its detailed technical renderings are meant to appeal to architects, planners and architecture students as well as civil engineers interested in architecture.