2014 Skyscrapers

2014 was a landmark year that saw the completion of a record 97 skyscrapers across the world. These skyscrapers vary in size, function, and construction material, but they are all at least 200 meters (656 feet) tall. Such is the definiton of a skyscraper according to the standards of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH). The CTBUH further defines a 'supertall' as a building taller than 300 meters (984 feet). These skyscrapers were completed across 19 countries, mostly in Asia and the Middle East. In fact of the 97, only 10 were built outside Asia and the Middle East, with every continent except Africa (and Antarctica) getting at least one new skyscraper. You can see the breakdown of where these 97 skyscrapers were built in the map below: [pdf-embedder url="http://www.skysaverusa.com/wp-content/uploads/Publication1-without-border.pdf"]


  Clearly, China was the dominant force in skyscrapers, completing a whopping 58 buildings that stand over 200 meters. These were built in cities across China, the tallest being The Wharf Times Square 1 a 69 story hotel/office building in Wuxi, just outside Shanghai.  width= Among the skyscrapers China built this year, there was one that became notable because of its record completion time. The skyscraper was constructed in Changsha China, is 228 meters tall, and was completed in an impressive 19 days. You can watch the amazing time lapse video of its construction below:  

 


  Outside of China, this was also a monumental year for South America, and specifically Chile. The Torre Costanera, a 300 meter supertall building was completed in Santiago and marks the first supertall building on the entire continent. 97 skyscrapers across the world. These skyscrapers vary in size, function, and construction material, but they are all at least 200 meters (656 feet) tall. Such is the definiton of a skyscraper according to the standards of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH). The CTBUH further defines a 'supertall' as a building taller than 300 meters (984 feet). These skyscrapers were completed across 19 countries, mostly in Asia and the Middle East. In fact of the 97, only 10 were built outside Asia and the Middle East, with every continent except Africa (and Antarctica) getting at least one new skyscraper. You can see the breakdown of where these 97 skyscrapers were built in the map below: [pdf-embedder url="http://www.skysaverusa.com/wp-content/uploads/Publication1-without-border.pdf"]


  Clearly, China was the dominant force in skyscrapers, completing a whopping 58 buildings that stand over 200 meters. These were built in cities across China, the tallest being The Wharf Times Square 1 a 69 story hotel/office building in Wuxi, just outside Shanghai. width= The building itself is part of the Costanera Center, a complex which includes the largest shopping mall in South America, two hotels, and two additional office towers.  The building has nearly 700,000 square meters of building space and was built on 47,000 square meters of land. It's clearly a massive complex, and on a daily basis there are over 200,0o0 people going to and from the site. Learn more about this supertall skyscraper in the video below.    


  Some more interesting facts about the skyscrapers completed this past year: -The tallest building completed was the much anticipated One World Trade Center, also known as The Freedom Tower, built on the northwest corner of the Word Trade Center Site. The Tower was built to the symbolic height of 1,776 feet (541 meters) to represent 1776, the year the United States Declaration of Independence was signed. As of completion is stands as the third tallest building in the world. -The average height of the 100 tallest buildings is now 350 meters, up from 344 meters in 2014. This number was at 285 meters in 2000 and just goes to show how tall the world is getting. According to this trend, it will only be a few years before the average top 100 skyscraper rises to 400 meters. -With the additional skyscrapers this year, China is now home to 348 skyscrapers versus only 169 in the United States. That's more than twice as many as the U.S. so it should be clear which country is the skyscraper leader. -If you put all 97 skyscrapers from end to end, you'd be about a quarter of the way to outer space, the combined height is 23,005 meters!  


  So what does all this mean: First of all, the world is getting taller and buildings are being completed at a faster rate than ever before. 3D printing could also affect speed and we have already seen China use a 3D printer to construct a 6 story building, and there's little doubt that they could go even higher. It also means that people will be competing over views with higher floors sure to be more expensive pieces of real estate. A Taiwanese designer has actually envisioned a building in which every apartment rotates up and down, so one month you have the penthouse, but a month later your same apartment has been lowered to the ground floor. You can read more about this mind-blowing idea here Lastly, with buildings going higher and higher, the issue of safety becomes even more pertinent. The NFPA advises having 2 safe exits from every room and in a ground floor home, this can be as simple as having a small ladder next to a window. However, in a skyscraper world, fire safety is an even more important and alternative forms of egress are crucial to survive a high-rise fire.   *All building statistics are taken from the CTBUH's 2014 report which can be found here.