Supertall Skyscrapers

There are many ways to track China’s rapid economic progress during the last 20 years but one, in particular, will appeal to the fans of “Supertall Skyscrapers” (buildings of above 300 metres in height⁠) who will have noticed that China has replaced the US as No. 1 in this category. According to Visual Capitalist, “no fewer than 30 Chinese cities added supertall skyscrapers to their skylines in the past two decades”.

It’s interesting to note that in 1999, half of the world’s 24 supertall skyscrapers were located in US cities, mainly in New York, and all (except the World Trade Centre) are still standing today. In the last 20 years, China has built half of the world’s tallest skyscrapers and these are spread around all of their major cities, with the Shanghai Tower standing out as the second tallest building in the world (after the Burj Khalifa in Dubai).

As the article concludes “there are currently 132 supertall skyscrapers in various phases of construction around the world right now. That’s more than five times the number of existing supertall structures that existed at the dawn of the new millennium. Over the next 20 years, as economic fortunes shift and architectural innovations advance, it remains to be seen what heights future skyscrapers will reach”.

As I walk through the CBD of my deserted home city of Sydney, admiring all the tall empty buildings around me, I wonder how the skyline of major cities may be impacted by Covid 19?


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