30 St Mary Axe

The 30 St Mary Axe first emerged above London’s skyline in 2003, it was unlike any tall building that Londoners had ever previously seen. It almost instantly became known “the Gherkin,” and, although the likeness to a pickled cucumber might seem a touch far-fetched, the nickname does acknowledge not only the tower’s unique, organic shape, but also its proud claim to be “green.” The building’s well-known architect, Lord Foster, has described it as a “pine cone.”

The shape of the building allows the 40-story building to occupy a minimum of ground space. The diameter of the building is 50 metres at base level, it expands bulbous waist of 56 metres on the 16th before tapering towards its highest point. In fact, the buildings height of 180 metres is only 2 metres greater than its maximum circumference. This means that the most of the site is left free as public space, a valuable commodity in London’s densely built financial heart. The shape also offers less resistance to the wind, reducing the down-droughts and eddies that swirl around tall structures.

The buildings consume up to 30 percent less energy than an equivalent-sized office block of conventional design. Much of this saving is achieved through the tower’s “biomorphic” form, which reduces the reliance on artificial lighting and air conditioning. The atria that spiral up around the core open up the structure to sunlight and fresh air, which is drawn by natural convection through the diagonal raising levels. Windows can also be opened to allow natural ventilation of the building.

Facts

  • The building was officially opened in March 2004 and it can, in theory, accommodate about 4,000 people.
  • The building contains nearly 35 kilometers on structural steel.
  • The glass cladding consists of 5,500 panels, covering the equivalent of 5 soccer fields.

Kingdom Center

Kingdom Center is a 41-storey, 302.3 m skyscraper in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It is the third tallest skyscraper in the country after the Abraj Al Bait Towers and the Burj Rafal, and is the world’s third tallest building with a hole after the Shanghai World Financial Center and Tuntex Sky Tower.

Besides the shopping mall, Kingdom Tower contains the Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh and apartments. There is a 56 m  sky bridge atop the skyscraper.

The building is situated on 100,000 square metres site with car parking for 3,000 vehicles.

The upper third of the tower features an inverted parabolic arch. The building utilities butt jointed glazing combined with the lack of both distinguished floor lines and other tall buildings around it. The lower two thirds were constructed with a reinforced concrete frame while the top third has a tubular steel frame.

The architectural model maker of the Center was Richard Tenguerian.

Facts

  • The inverted arch at the top was described by the developer as the city’s “necklace”, because the opening is lined with aluminum to highlight the unique shape in contrast all of the facade in reflective blue glass.
  •  The main lobby is a elliptical space with ribbed vaulting, elevated walkways, a fountain, and rows of palm trees. This elliptical form is a footprint used overall in the building objects and decoration.
  •  The Kingdom Center has won an important award in 2002 for its design.
  •  The original design called for a tower of 296.3 meters, but it was later increased.

Burj Khalifa

Construction of the Burj Khalifa began in 2004, with the exterior completed 5 years later in 2009. The primary structure is reinforced concrete. The building was opened in 2010 as part of a new development called Downtown Dubai. It is designed to be the centerpiece of large-scale, mixed-use development. The decision to build the building is reportedly based on the government’s decision to diversify from an oil-based economy, and for Dubai to gain international recognition.

The building was named in honor of the ruler of Abu Dhabi and president of the United Arab Emirates, Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan; Abu Dhabi and the UAE government lent Dubai money to pay its debts. The building broke numerous height records, including its designation as the tallest tower in the world.

Burj Khalifa was designed by Adrian Smith, then of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill , whose firm designed the Willis Tower and One World Trade Center. Hyder Consulting was chosen to be the supervising engineer with NORR Group Consultants International Limited chosen to supervise the architecture of the project. The design of Burj Khalifa is derived from patterning systems embodied in Islamic architecture, incorporating cultural and historical elements particular to the region, such as in the Great Mosque of Samarra.

The Y-shaped plan is designed for residential and hotel usage. A buttressed core structural system is used to support the height of the building, and the cladding system is designed to withstand Dubai’s summer temperatures. It contains a total of 57 elevators and 8 escalators.

Critical reception to Burj Khalifa has been generally positive, and the building has received many awards. However, the labor issues during construction were controversial, since the building was built primarily by workers from South East Asia, who were allegedly treated poorly.

Facts

  • More than 45,000cu meters of concrete has been poured into the foundations.
  • The 700 Private apartments in the building were sold within eight hours of going on the market.
  • Dubai Mall covers an area of more than 50 soccer pitches.

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Jin Mao Tower

The Jin Mao Tower also known as the Jinmao Building or Jinmao Tower is an 88-story  landmark skyscraper in Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai, China. It is 421 meters tall and is one of the tall meters dings in the world. It contains a shopping mall, offices and the Grand Hyatt Shanghai hotel, which at the time of completion was the highest hotel in the world.

Along with the Oriental Pearl Tower, the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Shanghai Tower it is part of the Lujiazui skyline seen from the Bund. It used to be the tallest building in China but its height was surpassed on September 14, 2007, by the Shanghai World Financial Center which is located close by.The Shanghai Tower, a 121-story building located next to these two buildings, surpassed the height of both these buildings in 2015.

In Chinese numerology, the number eight represents prosperity and brings luck to Chinese people. That is why the Jin Mao Tower in and 88 Story building since it is a business site.

The Skywalk, a 1,520 m2  indoor observation deck with a capacity of 1,000+ people, occupies the 88th floor of the building. In addition to the panoramic views of Shanghai, it offers a topside view of the hotel atrium below. It also includes a small post office. Access is through two express elevators from the basement that travel at 9.1 m/s and take 45 seconds to reach the top. As of 2009, admission to the 88th floor costs 88 RMB for adults and 45 RMB for children.

It is supposed to be lucky standing there since it is the 88th floor.

Facts

  • The world highest swimming pool, on the 57th floor, helps to counterbalance the swaying during and earthquake.
  • The 5-acre site is enclosed within a deep wall made of 27,000 cubic yards of concrete.
  • The spire is designed to resemble good luck according to Chinese symbol good luck.

Menara Telekom

Menara Tower was built just three years later the Petronas Towers. The Menara Tower is located in Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. This  building was made to operate HQ of Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Malaysia Berhad is Malaysia’s leading company of Telecommunications company. It is 310 m tall, has 77 floors, and is shaped to represent a sprouting “bamboo shoot”. It is located along the Federal Highway, Sprint Expressway and Jalan Pantai Baharu and is served by the Rapid KL Kerinchi, LRT station.

It was designed by Hijjas Kasturi Associates and was constructed between 1998 and 2001 by Daewoo Construction. Menara Telekom also houses several well-known tenants, namely Mercedes-Benz Malaysia, BASF, DHL, Hapag-Lloyd, Unilever, Henkel Malaysia, Penerbangan Malaysia Berhad, Takaful Nasional and the IT Department of Tenaga Nasional.

The complex also includes a theater able to seat a 2,500 audience, a large prayer hall, and a sports facility. A unique feature of the tower is its 22 open sky gardens alternating every three floors. The office floors are separated into north and south wings served by express double-deck elevators.

Facts

  • Former Malaysian Premier Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad opened the building on 10 February 2003.
  • The building can house 7,000 occupants and has 22 sky gardens.
  • Menara Tower cost an estimated $160 million to complete.

 

 

 

CN Tower

The CN Tower is located in Toronto, Canada, Till 2007, CN Tower at a outrageous  height of 553 meters remained the tallest self supporting structure in the world, This title was held since 1975. The newly built skyscrapers were as tall as 250 meters which created problems for signals to be received by radios and televisions.

Soon many companies decided to share a 500 meter tall building to send radio signals around Toronto. A local architect Ned Baldwin, proposed an idea to make the tallest building in the world because then signals cannot be interrupted and will soon become a tourist destination and landmark.

The CN Tower opened to the public on June 26, 1976. The construction costs of approximately CA$63 million were repaid in fifteen years. Canadian National Railway sold the tower prior to taking the company private in 1995, when they decided to divest themselves of all operations not directly related to their core freight shipping businesses.

The CN Tower was practically the only development along Front Street West; it was still possible to see Lake Ontario from the foot of the CN Tower due to the expansive parking lots and lack of development in the area at the time. As the area around the tower was developed, particularly with the completion of the Metro Toronto Convention Center in 1984 and the Sky Dome in 1989 the former Railway Lands were redeveloped and the tower became the center of a newly developing entertainment area.

Facts

  • The tower contains 53,000 cubic yards of concrete and wights 130,000 tons.
  • The record for climbing the 1,776 step of the worlds longest staircase is 7 minutes and 52 seconds.
  • CN Tower stands for the towers full name Canada’s national tower.

Taipei 101

There has always been a competition between the east Asian countries to build the tallest skyscrapers in the world. In October 2004 Taiwan came up with the massive building with a height of 508 meters. Construction on the 101-story tower started in 1999 and finished in 2004. The tower has served as an icon of modern Taiwan ever since its opening. The building was architecturally created as a symbol of the evolution of technology and Asian tradition.

The Taipei 101 has a unconventional modern architecture because of its postmodernist approach to style incorporates traditional design elements and gives them modern treatments. The tower is designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes.

Taipei 101 is the first record-setting skyscraper to be constructed in the 21st century. It exhibits a number of technologically advanced features as it provides a center for business and recreation.

The fiber-optic and satellite internet connections permitted transfer speeds up to a gigabyte per second. The double-deck elevators built by the Japanese Toshiba Elevator and Building Systems Corporation set a new record in 2004 with the fastest ascending speeds in the world at 60.6 kilometers.

Floor occupancy:

101st floor Summit 101 (Private VIP Club)
92nd – 100th floor Communication
91st floor Outdoor Observatory Deck
88th – 89th floor Indoor Observatory Deck
85th – 86th floor Observatory Restaurant
59th – 84th floor High Zone Office
59th – 60th floor Sky lobbies
35th – 58th floor Mid Zone Office
36th floor Taipei 101 Conference Center
35th – 36th floor Sky lobbies
35th  floor Amenities
9th – 34th floor Low Zone Office
B1st – 5th floor Taipei 101 Mall
B5th – B2nd floor Parking Levels

Facts

  • Taipei 101 has 101 stories above ground and 5 under ground that is why its known as Taipei 101
  • It costed about an estimated amount of $700 million
  • The damper placed in the 88th floor counters typhoons and earthquakes.

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