Race to Build

© MAS Studio.


Diagrams by Iker Gil and André Corrêa


The race to build the tallest building in the world has been going on ever since the first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Building, was built in Chicago in 1885 (it was demolished in 1931). The Empire State Building was the first building to have more than 100 floors and the tallest building in the world until 1973 when it was surpassed by the World Trade Center. Willis Tower (then Sears Tower), Petronas Twin Towers, and Taipei 101 followed. At 828 meters or 2,717 feet, Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world, but according to recent news, it might not be long until it gets surpassed. Kingdom Tower, the proposed building in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, is expected to reach 1,000 meters (3281 feet) by the time it is completed in 2017. Iker Gil and André Corrêa dig in the archives of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat to visualize the new current situation around the world and trends during the last 100 years.


Top 25 countries with buildings over 150 meters. © MAS Studio.


All of the top 15 cities with buildings over 150 meters (492 feet) are located in Asia except for New York and Chicago. Cities in Asia account for 1,078 buildings of the total 1,611 located in the top 25 cities, which is 67%.

Of all the buildings over 500 meters being proposed or under construction right now, only One World Trade Center in New York City will not be located in Asia. If in 1960, 90% of the tallest buildings in the world were located in North America, in 2010 the percentage has dropped to 30%, with Asia and the Middle East having over 60%.


Top 25 cities with buildings over 150 meters. © MAS Studio.


Number of completed buildings of 150 meters and up per year. © MAS Studio.


List of the tallest buildings in the world. © MAS Studio.


Iker Gil is an architect, urban designer, and director of MAS Studio. In addition, he is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of Architecture at UIC. He is the recipient of the 2010 Emerging Visions Award from the Chicago Architectural Club.
mas-studio.com | @MASContext

André Corrêa is a designer at MAS Studio. As part of the office, he has been involved in several urban and architecture projects, including a single-family housing in New Orleans and a renovation of a house located in the northwest of Spain.
www.mas-studio.com | @acorrea33

Tags: , , , , , , ,