Top 1 Burj Khalifa , known as Burj Dubai prior to its inauguration, is a skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and is the tallest manmade structure in the world, at 829.84 m (2,723 ft). Construction began on 21 September 2004, with the exterior of the structure completed on 1 October 2009. The building officially
opened on 4 January 2010, and is part of the new 2 km2 (490-acre) flagship development called Downtown Dubai at the 'First Interchange' along Sheikh Zayed
Road, near Dubai's main business district. The tower's architecture and engineering were performed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill of Chicago, with Adrian Smith as chief architect, and Bill Baker as chief structural engineer. The primary contractor was Samsung C&T of South Korea.
The total cost for the project was about US$1.5 billion; and for the entire "Downtown Dubai" development, US$20 billion. In March 2009, Mohamed Ali Alabbar, chairman of the project's developer, Emaar Properties, said office space pricing at Burj Khalifa reached US$4,000 per sq ft (over US$43,000 per m²) and the Armani Residences, also in Burj Khalifa, sold for US$3,500 per sq ft (over US$37,500 per m²).
The project's completion coincided with the global financial crisis of 2007–2010, and with vast overbuilding in the country, led to high vacancies and foreclosures. With Dubai mired in debt from its huge ambitions, the government was forced to seek multibillion dollar bailouts from its oil-rich neighbor Abu Dhabi. Subsequently, in a surprise move at its opening ceremony, the tower was renamed Burj Khalifa, said to honour the UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan for his crucial support.
Due to the slumping demand in Dubai's property market, the rents in the Burj Khalifa plummeted 40% some ten months after its opening. Out of 900 apartments in the tower, around 825 were still empty at that time.
Top 2 The Abraj Al-Bait Towers, also known as the Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower, is a building complex in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The complex holds several world records, such as the tallest hotel in the world, the tallest clock tower in the world, the world's largest clock face, and the world's largest building floor area. The complex's hotel tower has become the second tallest building in the world in 2012, surpassed only by Dubai's Burj Khalifa. The building complex is meters away from the world's largest mosque and Islam's most sacred site, the Masjid al Haram. The developer and contractor of the complex is the Saudi Binladin Group, the Kingdom's largest construction company.
It was built at the same place as the former Ajyad Fortress, an old fort of the Ottoman epoch dating from the 18th century and which was destroyed in 2002 by the Saudi government in order to begin the building work, sparking global outcry. Contents
The tallest tower in the complex stands as the tallest building in Saudi Arabia, and the tallest and largest hotel in the world, with a height of 601 metres (1,972 feet). Currently it is the second tallest building in the world surpassing Tapei 101 and the fourth tallest structure in the world. The structure had surpassed Dubai International Airport having the largest floor area of any structure in the world with 1,500,000 m2 (16,150,000 sq ft) of floorspace. It also surpassed the Emirates Park Towers in Dubai as the world's tallest hotel.
The site of the complex is located across the street to the south from an entrance to the Masjid al Haram mosque, which houses the Kaaba. To accommodate worshipers visiting the Kaaba, the Abraj Al-Bait Towers has a large prayer room capable of holding more than 10,000 people. The tallest tower in the complex also contains a five-star hotel to help provide lodging for the millions of pilgrims that travel to Mecca annually to participate in Hajj.
In addition, the Abraj Al-Bait Towers has a five-story shopping mall (the Abraj Al Bait Mall) and a parking garage capable of holding over a thousand vehicles. Residential towers house permanent residents while two heliports and a conference center are to accommodate business travelers. In total, up to 100,000 people could be housed inside the towers. The project uses clock faces for each side of the hotel tower. The highest residential floor stands at 450 metres (1,480 feet), just below the clocks. The clock faces are 43 × 43 m (141 × 141 ft), the largest in the world. The roof of the clocks is 530 metres (1,740 feet) above the ground, making them the world's most elevated architectural clocks. A 71-metre-tall spire (233 ft) has been added on top of the clock giving it a total height of 601 metres (1,972 feet), which makes it the second tallest building in the world, surpassing Taipei 101 in Taiwan. The tower also includes an Islamic Museum and a Lunar Observation Center which will also be used to sight the moon during the Holy Months.
Building was planned to be 485 meters tall in 2006. In 2009, it was published that the final height will be 601 meters. The complex was built by the Saudi Binladin Group, Saudi Arabia's largest construction company. The clock tower was designed by the German company Premiere Composite Technologies, and the clock by the Swiss engineering firm Straintec. According to the Saudi Ministry of Religious Endowments, the project cost $15 billion.
Top 3 Taipei 101, formerly known as the Taipei World Financial Center, is a landmark skyscraper located in Xinyi District, Taipei, Taiwan. The building ranked officially as the world's tallest from 2004 until the opening of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai in 2010. In July 2011, the building was awarded LEED Platinum certification, the highest award in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system and became the tallest and largest green building in the world. Taipei 101 was designed by C.Y. Lee & partners and constructed primarily by Samsung C&T and KTRT Joint Venture. The tower has served as an icon of modern Taiwan ever since its opening, and received the 2004 Emporis Skyscraper Award. Fireworks launched from Taipei 101 feature prominently in international New Year's Eve broadcasts and the structure appears frequently in travel literature and international media.
Taipei 101 comprises 101 floors above ground and 5 floors underground. The building was architecturally created as a symbol of the evolution of technology and Asian tradition (see Symbolism). Its postmodernist approach to style incorporates traditional design elements and gives them modern treatments. The tower is designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes. A multi-level shopping mall adjoining the tower houses hundreds of fashionable stores, restaurants and clubs.
Taipei 101 is owned by the Taipei Financial Center Corporation (TFCC) and managed by the International division of Urban Retail Properties Corporation based in Chicago. The name originally planned for the building, Taipei World Financial Center, until 2003, was derived from the name of the owner. The original name in Chinese was literally, Taipei International Financial Center (Chinese)
The Taipei 101 tower has 101 stories above ground and five underground. Upon its completion Taipei 101 claimed the official records for:
Ground to highest architectural structure (spire): 508 metres (1,667 ft). Previously held by the Petronas Towers 451.9 m (1,483 ft).
Ground to roof: 449.2 m (1,474 ft). Formerly held by the Willis Tower 442 m (1,450 ft).
Ground to highest occupied floor: 438 m (1,437 ft). Formerly held by the Willis Tower 412.4 m (1,353 ft).
Fastest ascending elevator speed: designed to be 1010 meters per minute, which is 16.83 m/s (55.22 ft/s) (60.6 km/h, 37.7 mi/h).
Largest countdown clock: Displayed on New Year's Eve.
Tallest sundial. (See 'Symbolism' below.)
Taipei 101 is the first building in the world to break the half-kilometer mark in height. The record it claimed for greatest height from ground to pinnacle now rests with the Burj Khalifa in Dubai (UAE): 828 m (2,717 ft). Taipei 101's records for roof height and highest occupied floor briefly passed to the Shanghai World Financial Center in 2009, which in turn yielded these records as well to the Burj.
Taipei 101 displaced the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, as the tallest building in the world by 56.1 m (184 ft). It also displaced the 85-story, 347.5 m (1,140 ft) Tuntex Sky Tower in Kaohsiung as the tallest building in Taiwan and the 51-story, 244.2 m (801 ft) Shin Kong Life Tower as the tallest building in Taipei.
Various sources, including the building's owners, give the height of Taipei 101 as 508.0 m (1,667 ft), roof height and top floor height as 448.0 m (1,470 ft) and 438.0 m (1,437 ft). This lower figure is derived by measuring from the top of a 1.2 m (4 ft) platform at the base. CTBUH standards, though, include the height of the platform in calculating the overall height, as it represents part of the man-made structure and is above the level of the surrounding pavement.
Top 4 The Shanghai World Financial Center (SWFC) is a supertall skyscraper located in the Pudong district of Shanghai, China. It was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and developed by the Mori Building Company. It is a mixed-use skyscraper, consisting of offices, hotels, conference rooms, observation decks, and ground-floor shopping malls. Park Hyatt Shanghai is the hotel component, containing 174 rooms and suites. Occupying the 79th to the 93rd floors, it is the second-highest hotel in the world, surpassing the Grand Hyatt Shanghai on the 53rd to 87th floors of the neighboring Jin Mao Tower.
On 14 September 2007, the skyscraper was topped out at 492.0 meters (1,614.2 ft), making it, at the time, the second-tallest building in the world and the tallest structure in Mainland China. It also had the highest occupied floor and the highest height to roof, two categories used to determine the title of "world’s tallest building". The SWFC opened on 28 August 2008, with its observation deck opening two days later. This observation deck, the world's tallest at the time of its completion, offers views from 474 m (1,555 ft) above ground level.
The SWFC has been lauded for its design, and in 2008 it was named by architects as the year's best completed skyscraper. The SWFC will be exceeded in height by the adjacent Shanghai Tower, which is due for completion in 2014.
The tower's foundation stone was laid on 27 August 1997. In the late 1990s, the Pierre de Smet Building Corporation suffered a funding shortage caused by the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98, which halted the project after the foundations were completed. On 13 February 2003, the Mori Group increased the building's height to 492 m (1,614 ft) and 101 stories, from the initial plans for a 460-metre (1,509 ft), 94-story building. The new building used the foundations of the original design, and construction work was resumed on 16 November 2003.
A fire broke out in the incomplete SWFC on 14 August 2007. The fire was first noticed on the 40th floor, around 16:30 (GMT +8), and soon the smoke was clearly seen outside the building. By 17:45, the fire had been extinguished. The damage was reported to be slight and nobody was injured in the accident. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but according to some sources the preliminary investigation suggested workers' electric weldings caused the fire.
The building reached its total height of 492 m (1,614 ft) on 14 September 2007 after the installation of the final steel girder. The final cladding panels were installed in mid-June 2008, and elevator installation was finished in mid-July. The Shanghai World Financial Center was completed on 17 July 2008, and was officially opened on 28 August. On 30 August 2008, the tower's observation floors were opened to the public.
Top 5 The International Commerce Centre ( ICC Tower) is a 118 floor, 484 m (1,588 ft) skyscraper completed in 2010 in West Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is a part of the Union Square project built on top of Kowloon Station. The development is owned and jointly developed by MTR Corporation Limited and Sun Hung Kai Properties, Hong Kong's metro operator and largest property developer respectively. It is currently the world's fourth tallest building by height, world's second tallest building by floors, as well as the tallest building in Hong Kong.
Its formal development name is Union Square Phase 7 and the name International Commerce Centre was officially announced in 2005. International Commerce Centre was completed in phases from 2007 to 2010. The tower opened in 2011, with the Ritz-Carlton opening in late March and the observatory in early April.
Sun Hung Kai Properties also developed, along with another major Hong Kong developer, Henderson Land, the second-tallest skyscraper in Hong Kong, the 2 International Finance Centre, which is located directly across Victoria Harbour in Central, Hong Kong Island.
The height had been scaled back from earlier plans due to regulations that didn't allow buildings to be taller than the surrounding mountains. The original proposal for this building was called Kowloon Station Phase 7 and it was designed to be 574 m (1,883 ft) tall with 102 floors. It would have risen 162 m (531 ft) over the then current tallest in Hong Kong, 2 International Finance Centre.
The tower was designed by the American architectural firm Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) in association with Wong & Ouyang (HK) Ltd..