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The Tallest Building In The World
The Burj Khalifa Tower in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, sometimes known as “Khalifa tower” or the “Burj al Khalifa” is a truly amazing feat of engineering.
The first question most people ask is “how high is the Burj Khalifa?”. Standing a massive 2,722 feet high (829.8 Metres), it is the world’s tallest building, with a head spinning 163 floors.
The architect behind this incredible building was Adrian Smith working for Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill.
The Burj Khalifa took six years to construct and was opened on 4 January 2010, just one month later than planned. During construction, the building was known as “Burj Dubai” until its official opening, when it was renamed “The Burj Khalifa”
With an eye-popping 24,348 windows, it takes 36 workers three to four months to clean the exterior of the building. Unmanned cleaning bots take care of the top 27 floors and the glass spire.
The observation deck is the highest in the world, which is situated on the148th floor. The tower also holds the record for the world’s highest outdoor observation deck on the124th floor. Both floors have state of the art high powered telescopes for some extraordinary viewing.
There is a restaurant on the 122nd floor and a nightclub on floor 144.
Two swimming pools are on floors 34 and 76 and this is one of the few times the Burj Khalifa comes is second place. The Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Honk Kong holds that record on its 118th floor. Well, you have to give others a sporting chance I guess!
A 304 room Armani Hotel is located in the tower and occupies 15 floors.
Floors up to the108th have 900 residential apartments
There are 57elevators, 8 escalators, and 2,909 stairs.
During the building of the Burj Khalifa, 13,000 men worked 24\7 building a new floor every three days.
Workers rights and wages were a worry at the time as skilled personnel were reportedly paid around £4 an hour and unskilled workers, just £2.42 an hour.
There was a violent workers riot, mainly over a lack of punctual transportation after shifts. It was said to have caused $500,000 in damages.
It took over 110,000 tonnes concrete to build.
39,000 tonnes of steel rebar.
and total construction time took about 22 million man-hours.
Here come the crazy people
The Burj Khalifa has been used by BASE jumpers for both legal and illegal jumps.
In March 2011, Alain “Spiderman” Robert climbed the outside of the tower. The climb to the top of the spire took 6 hours. Because of UAE laws, Alain, who usually climbs in freestyle, was required to use rope and harness for the climb.
An Asian man in his 30’s committed suicide on the10th May 2011 by jumping from the 147th floor.
In November 2014 a female Portuguese tourist fell to her death from the Observation Deck on the 148th floor. After The Burj Khalifa made the gaps between the glass panes smaller and safer.
Parts of the 2011 movie, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, were shot in Burj Khalifa. Tom Cruise, as always, did his own stunts. They were breath-taking. See video below.
Why was the Burj Khalifa built? And who built the Burj Khalifa? Are also common questions. I think this text from the burjkhalifa.ae website explains it better than I can;
Mr Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman, Emaar Properties, said: “Burj Khalifa goes beyond its imposing physical specifications. In Burj Khalifa, we see the triumph of Dubai’s vision of attaining the seemingly impossible and setting new benchmarks. It is a source of inspiration for every one of us in Emaar. The project is a declaration of the emirate’s capabilities and of the resolve of its leaders and people to work hand in hand on truly awe-inspiring projects.
Emaar had but one inspiration, the unflagging enthusiasm set in motion by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who inspires us to reach for the stars.
Links and sources to further reading
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The world’s tallest building (c) 2015-2016 True Stories v1.0, L,G,A