Postcard from... Shanghai

  • @cliffordcoonan


The economy may be slowing down, but China’s fondness for adding spectacular skyscrapers to the skylines of its ever-expanding cities remains undimmed.

Shanghai Tower, which will become China’s tallest building when it is completed in 2015, has reached the highest point of its main structure. Officials held a topping-out ceremony to mark the placement of the final beam on the main structure of the 2,074-foot project in Shanghai’s Pudong business hub.

The 125-storey complex will include offices, a luxury hotel and retail space, according to the developer, Shanghai Tower Construction  and Development. The tower will be divided into nine sections with different functions, separated by gardens or viewing platforms.

Even as the world’s second largest economy slows, there is growing competition in China to build the tallest building. China completed 22 buildings higher than 200 metres (656 feet) last year, around one third of the global total. The 2,165-foot Ping An Finance Centre in the southern city of Shenzhen will be China’s tallest building when it is completed in 2016.

“It’s a testimony of construction abilities and city ambition,” Zhen Shiling, a member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, told the Xinhua news agency.

Shanghai Tower is set to be the tallest building in East Asia, and second in the world to the 2,716 Burj Khalifa in Dubai.

The Kingdom Tower, currently under construction in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, is expected to be at least one kilometre (3,281 feet).