The Towering Ambitions of Skyscrapers

25/05/2017

Do you know the UK’s first skyscraper?
The Royal Liver Building Liverpool. The Liver Building stands at 90 m (300 ft.) tall with 13 floors and the clock faces are larger in size than those of the Houses of Parliament.

Some of the most outstanding and beautiful buildings of the past include the pyramids in Egypt, the towers in Italian hills as well as the numerous gothic cathedrals of Europe but today a skyscraper is perhaps a city’s ultimate symbol of modern cultural production and involves the labour of not just architects, but steel-workers, engineers as well as bankers and billionaires.

Impressive skyscrapers are essential to create international city status and are a rising tide in the world’s global cities, for instance London alone has added 24 new skyscrapers since the turn of the millennium – they make a city creative, provide individuality and prevent buildings from sprawling out.

Cities with the most skyscrapers include Hong Kong, Tokyo, and New York.  Asia leads the world when it comes to the number of skyscrapers having over 9,000 followed by North America with approximately 3,200 whilst Europe has approximately 800.

A city can move outwards or upwards but today every city has got to take into account both economic and population growth, for example, India’s urban population is forecast to practically double to 814 million by 2050; and New York’s population has increased 20% since 1980. 

Greening the skyscraper
But building big is nothing new and the important issue today is that skyscrapers mean green living. Since the early construction of skyscrapers engineers have constantly developed methods to improve architectural design, but today, not only have they got to be strong, durable and resistant to all types of weather, skyscrapers must be green because if a city is going to reduce its carbon footprint then their skyscrapers need be green.  Buildings are rising higher and new technologies are emerging to make this both possible and cost efficient.

Greening the skyscraper means energy efficient windows, lighting that is also energy efficient and also roofing must have the potential for solar heating, reducing pollution is essential.

Clean technology – green design
The environmental impact of buildings is becoming more apparent and green skyscraper design means buildings with minimal impact on the environment and release less pollution outside than the traditional skyscraper.

Vertical Living
Companies want to be in a skyscraper that is the place to be by moving vertically to enact all daily activities.

Staff retention is of growing concern to most companies throughout the world, firms want their environment to be an attractive place to work and being in a state-of-the-art skyscraper gives the wow factor to both existing and potential employees.

Businesses are rapidly moving vertically to accommodate their staff, by offering work on one floor, shopping facilities on another, cafes, bars, exercising – the use of a gym, as well as attending functions and parties etc all in the one building ‘the skyscraper as the place to be’.

Ever gave it any thought as to what your favourite skyscraper in the world is and why?

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