Monday, January 4, 2010

The Air Up There

Today marked the official opening of the new tallest building in the world. The Burj Khalifa stands at an astonishing 2,717 feet tall and completely shatters the previous height record of 1,671 feet (Taipei 101). The building took nearly 6 years to build and is financed with $1.5 billion of the dumb-rich oil money that the big wigs in Dubai possess.

I've always been an admirer of tall buildings and have been to the top of the CN Tower, Empire State Building and Eiffel Tower. I even got a slight rush out of making it to the top of St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City. Every few years it seemed that one country would try to one-up another by building a structure that just barely topped the previous record. Well the bold Dubai businessmen who planned the Burj weren't messing around and wanted to set a record that wouldn't be beaten so easily. This new mega tower is just over 600 feet away from DOUBLING the second tallest building in the world. The pictures posted on sites such as are simply astonishing to look at.

It's hard to believe that a structure this tall could be engineered properly to withstand wind and other elements. The YouTube video below (in HD) is a first hand look at the top of the tower. The view looking down is completely ridiculous to see. It looks like the whole thing is some CGI creation. Needless to say, I'd love to go visit Dubai sometime (I used to think nothing in that area of the world was worth visiting) and experience the Burj Khalifa in person.

Here's another video of a brave individual sitting at the very top of the tower

1 comment:

Stacey said...

Very, very cool building. Of course all I can think of is that if we lived there how long of an elevator ride it would be to take the dog out to pee. Yes, that is how I think. In Charlotte it isn't so much about tall buildings but incorporating living with shopping and dining. We have had a lot of complexes spring up over the past few years where shops are on the bottom floor and condos on the top few levels. Very interesting and I think probably the model for future urban development. Of course, I still like my single family home on .5 and acre but I'm not currently their target market.