Architecture

The kilometer-high club: World's tallest skyscraper a step closer to completion

The kilometer-high club: World...
Jeddah Tower will rise 1,007 m (3,303 ft), dwarfing even the Burj Khalifa – the world's current tallest skyscraper
Jeddah Tower will rise 1,007 m (3,303 ft), dwarfing even the Burj Khalifa – the world's current tallest skyscraper
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Jeddah Tower will rise 1,007 m (3,303 ft), dwarfing even the Burj Khalifa – the world's current tallest skyscraper
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Jeddah Tower will rise 1,007 m (3,303 ft), dwarfing even the Burj Khalifa – the world's current tallest skyscraper
Towering over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah, the Jeddah Tower's sheer size boggles the mind
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Towering over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah, the Jeddah Tower's sheer size boggles the mind
It requires 59 elevators, includes some 5.7 million sq ft (530,000 sq m) of floorspace, and will be so high that you'd be able to see some 120 km (74.5 miles) to the horizon from the top
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It requires 59 elevators, includes some 5.7 million sq ft (530,000 sq m) of floorspace, and will be so high that you'd be able to see some 120 km (74.5 miles) to the horizon from the top

Saudi development group Jeddah Economic Company recently secured SAR8.4 billion (US$2.2 billion) additional funding to complete the Jeddah Tower. Under construction since 2013, the massive mixed-use skyscraper is on track to become the tallest building in the world.

Formerly known as both the Kingdom Tower and Mile-High Tower (the latter dropped once its height was reduced due to concerns the ground couldn't support it), Jeddah Tower is set to be the first member of the kilometer-high club and will rise some 1,007 m (3,303 ft) over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah.

Its projected size is hard to get your head around. It will be over three times the height of the Eiffel Tower, over twice the height Empire State Building, and dwarf even the Burj Khalifa – the world's current tallest tower, which is 828 m (2,716 ft). Interestingly, both skyscrapers are the brainchild of the same American architect, Adrian Smith (the former for SOM, the latter for Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill).

Of course, the proposed Bride would be even taller still, but since there's no immediate plans to build it, Jeddah Tower's status as world's tallest building looks assured for a while. For an informative rundown of the current and future state of skyscrapers, check out our video.

Towering over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah, the Jeddah Tower's sheer size boggles the mind
Towering over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah, the Jeddah Tower's sheer size boggles the mind

Rising over the Red Sea port city of Jeddah, the tower requires 59 elevators, will include some 5.7 million sq ft (530,000 sq m) of floorspace, and will boast the world's highest observatory, a Four Seasons luxury hotel, office space, and many plush apartments.

Its triangular form, which is inspired by the folded leaves of a desert plant, is designed to withstand the strongest winds. In addition, its three sides sport notches that create pockets of shadow to shield areas of the building from the sun.

Jeddah Tower is expected to open by 2020.

Sources: AS+GG, Kingdom Holding Company

6 comments
Teaser-Trailer.com
Yet another glass and steel oven built in the desert! That thing will waste so much energy for air conditioning... And are they planning a sewage system? Or will they get rid of sewage truck by truck like the Burj Khalifa, that inefficient building in Dubai?
swaan
It looks very wasteful and its all paid by us.
owlbeyou
Every time the Gulf States try to pull off another architectural first, it just seems wasteful and tired. They have so much money to burn, so on to the next wonder of the desert. When will they ever realize that these stunts are so lame?
POOL PUMPREAPAIR guy longwood
Looks like it has a Direct TV dish screwed to one side of it
Antony Innit
It won't have any cinemas, bibles, bare arms and legs, because they are illegal, and satellite dishes are formally illegal too.
Grainpaw
A hundred years ago, when Lawrence of Arabia passed through Jeddah,it was four and five story buildings on alleys too narrow for carts, and a roofed bazaar. It was cruelly hot in October. Now, thanks to oil money, it is a major modern city. I guess they are entitled to spend their money as they want. Meanwhile, Americans were able to get to work or the mall or Grandma's house as desired. To each his own.