Monday, 4 January 2010

Burj Khalifa - Tallest building in the world

Burj Khalifa - Tallest building in the world
The tallest man-made structure ever built, the Burj Khalifa was inaugurated today. Since it's inception, the building was known as Burj Dubai but at the inauguration this evening it was renamed the Burj Khalifa in honour of the current President of the UAE and ruler of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan. It was renamed since Sheikh Khalifa's emirate, Abu Dhabi, pumped billions of dollars into Dubai to help its neighbour out of financial crisis.

The Burj Khalifa stands at 818m (2684ft) and to put things in perspective, even if you put the Eiffel Tower on top of the 2nd tallest building, Taipei 101, it still wouldn't reach the height of Burj Khalifa!

It has 206 floors, excluding the basement. Aside from being the tallest building in the world, it also holds the following records:
  • Tallest free-standing structure in the world
  • Highest number of stories in the world
  • Highest occupied floor in the world
  • Highest outdoor observation deck in the world
  • Elevator with the longest travel distance in the world
  • Tallest service elevator in the world
Even if the spectacular skyscraper could eventually be considered a national icon in the UAE, there are a lot of expectations considering Dubai's recent debt-ridden status. Only time will tell whether it will be financially viable.

The structure is at the heart of Downtown Burj Dubai, a mega multi-purpose project which also hosts the world's largest shopping mall, the Dubai Mall with more than 1200 shops.

Burj Khalifa - Tallest man-made structure in the worldPhoto by Kuni Takahashi

The Burj Khalifa was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) architects and the primary builder was South Korean Samsung C&T, who also built the Taipei 101 and Petronas Twin Towers. Construction started in January 2004 and the total cost is estimated at about US$4,1 billion. The building includes an Armani hotel, about 1000 apartments, small offices and observatories.

Video: Burj Khalifa - World's tallest building

Video: A virtual representation of how the Burj Khalifa would measure up if it was located in other famous cities around the world

(If this video does not load, click here to see it)

Video: Burj Khalifa opens - fireworks display

Burj Khalifa at night

Burj Khalifa at night

Related links
The Burj Dubai: New world's tallest building shows that nothing succeeds like excess - Chicago Tribune
Burj Dubai renamed as Burj Khalifa


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