TouriSpo Magazine

Record-Breaking: The 3 Tallest Structures in the World

Big, bigger, the biggest - ever since the first skyscraper was built in New York City in 1908, architects and city planners have been trying to fly higher and higher. Besides status symbol, housing and office space, their main perk is one: they attract tourists. No wonder; after all, the observatories offer a unique bird's view of megacities like Tokyo, Shanghai, or Dubai. Let us introduce you to the three tallest structures in the world, and show you everything they have in store.

1. Burj Khalifa: The Sky is the Limit

Burj Khalifa is the first building after Empire State Building to hold the records for tallest building and tallest structure at once.
© TouriSpo / Andrea Poschinger Burj Khalifa is the first building after Empire State Building to hold the records for tallest building and tallest structure at once.

Burj Khalifa in Dubai is the undisputed number one on the record list. Opened in 2010, its 2,722 feet helped break a number of records. Besides being the tallest building and structure in the world, it also has the highest utilisable storey, the highest roof, and the fastest elevator in the world.

Within less than a minute, visitors are transported to the 124th floor. Amazing views of Dubai and the desert on the one side, and the coast with artificial islands World and Palmeira on the other side expect you. Furthermore, at certain times, you get to enjoy Dubai Fountain's water games. To get even closer to the sky, you can purchase a ticket for "At the Top Sky" observatory on the 148th floor. When it first opened, it was the highest viewing platform in the world.

>> More about Burj Khalifa

Total Height2,722 feet
Hight of the viewing platformsAt the Top          1,496 feet
At the Top SKY  1,821 feet
Opening4th January 2010
Building costapprox. 1 billion euros

 

2. Tokyo Skytree: Function Meets Design

The peak of Tokyo Skytree looms more than 630 metres into the sky over the Japanese capital.
©Taito City/©JNTO The peak of Tokyo Skytree looms more than 630 metres into the sky over the Japanese capital.

Second place is occupied by Tokyo Skytree, looming 2,080 feet into the sky over the Japanese capital. Its function as a radio and television tower is just as important as its thoughtful design. Special care has been given to the choice of symbolic colours.

Skytree features two different viewing points: Tembo Deck and Tembo Galleria. Sloping glass walls open up a stunning 360° view over the Japanese megacity. The glass floor on Floor340 is the absolute highlight. Venturing here, you will literally have Tokyo lying at your feet - this unique perspective is surely worth overcoming your vertigo.

>> Further information on Tokyo Skytree

Total Height2,080 feet
Hight of the viewing platformsTembo Deck       1,148 feet
Tembo Galleria   1,476 feet
Opening22nd Mai 2012
Building costapprox. 460 million euros

3. Shanghai Tower: Symbol of Modern China

The spiralling facade of Shanghai Tower symbolises the emergence of modern China.
CC BY-NC-ND 2.0   © Lawrence Wang The spiralling facade of Shanghai Tower symbolises the emergence of modern China.

Despite being the second tallest building in the world, Shanghai Tower only comes third on this list. When you include structures, height is measured from the tip of the antenna, making Tokyo Skytree about 7 feet taller than the 2,073 feet megatower.

Still, the Chinese skyscraper has a lot to offer. When Top of Shanghai Observatory was opened, it replaced Burj Khalifa at the top of the list of highest viewing platforms in the world. Even a megacity like Shanghai seems small seen from such heights. The ultramodern tower, whose winding frontage represents the emerge of modern China, is also home to a number of exhibitions.

>> Everything you need to know about Shanghai Tower

Total Height2,073 feet
Hight of viewing platformsTop of Shanghai Observatory   1,841 feet
OpeningMarch 2016
Building costapprox. 1.9 billion euros

 

Race for the Tallest Building

The origin of the trend to grow ever taller lies in New York City, where the first skyscrapers were built in the early 20th century. Empire State Building occupied the first place for 41 whole years. In the nineties, Asia took the helm; structures got bigger and bigger. To cope with the enormous population increase in the cities, growing horizontally was no longer enough - cities had to grow upward.

The race for the tallest building still continues. Saudi-Arabia is currently working on Jeddah Tower, which is meant to take Burj Khalifa's place in 2020. As the centre of a newly created district in Jeddah, the tower is supposed to reach 3,304 feet. Tokyo is aiming even higher: by 2045, Sky Mile Tower is meant to be the first structure to be a full mile high.

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created on 30 Nov 2018
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