The Ping An Finance Centre has been hailed the world's fourth-tallest skyscraper by the influential Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH). Rising to a total height of 599 m (1,965 ft) in Shenzhen, China, the tower is the latest in a series of impressive supertall skyscrapers by Kohn Pedersen Fox.

Located in Shenzhen's central business district, the mixed-use Ping An Finance Centre comprises 462,000 sq m (4,973,000 sq ft) of floorspace, spread over 100 floors. Each day, the building will accommodate up to 15,500 workers and 9,000 visitors to its observation deck, which lies at a height of 550 m (1,804 ft), making it just a few meters short of the world's tallest observation deck in the Burj Khalifa.

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The skyscraper is anchored by a large glass and stone podium that provides an additional five floors of retail space. A central atrium serves as a public lobby and provides an impressive location for meeting, shopping and dining, while allowing plenty of daylight inside too.

Though the Ping An Finance Centre's tapering form looks uncomplicated from a distance, closer inspection reveals an interesting sculpted facade that's shaped to mitigate the effects of wind. Stone chevron-shaped columns converge at the tower's top and stainless steel protrusions are aimed at protecting the building against lightning strikes.

According to the CTBUH, the Ping An Finance Centre boasts the world's largest stainless steel facade, with a total of 1,700 tons (1,542 kg) of the metal installed for its corrosion resistance qualities, to stand up against Shenzhen's salty coastal atmosphere.

Currently, only the Burj Khalifa, Shanghai Tower, and Makkah Royal Clock Tower are taller worldwide. Indeed, KPF is a heavyweight presence in CTBUH's entire top 10 rankings of tallest buildings and is also responsible for the 6th place CTF Finance Centre, 8th place Shanghai World Financial Center, and 9th place International Commerce Centre. In addition, its Lotte World Tower will likely soon be recognized in the rankings in 5th place, a position currently held by SOM's One World Trade Center.

The Ping An Finance Centre was actually completed last year but was just recognized as complete by the CTBUH this week.

Sources: KPF, CTBUH

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