Jin Mao Tower, Shanghai World Financial Centre

Shanghai World Financial Center is a super tall skyscraper located in the Pudong district of Shanghai, China. It was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and developed by the Mori Building Company, with Leslie E. Robertson Associates as its structural engineer and China State Construction Engineering Corp and Shanghai Construction (Group) General Co. as its main contractor.

It is a mixed-use skyscraper, consisting of offices, hotels, conference rooms, observation decks, and ground-floor shopping malls. The building of the tower was financed by several multinational firms, including Chinese, Japanese, and Hong Kong banks, as well as by the Japanese developer and American and European investors.

A fire broke out in the incomplete SWFC on the 14th of August 2007. The fire was first noticed on the 40th floor, around 16:30, and soon the smoke was clearly seen outside the building. By 17:45, the fire had been extinguished. The damage was reported to be slight, and nobody was injured in the accident.

Jin Mao Tower is an 88-story landmark skyscraper in the Lujiazui area of the Pudong district also in Shanghai, China. The foundations rest on 1,062 high-capacity steel piles driven 83.5 m deep in the ground to compensate for poor upper-strata soil conditions.

At the time those were the longest steel piles ever used in a land-based building. The piles are capped by a 4 m-thick concrete raft 19.6 m underground. The exterior curtain wall is made of glass, stainless steel, aluminium, and granite, and is criss-crossed by complex latticework cladding made of aluminium alloy pipes.

At the time of its official opening in January 1999, it was one of the tallest buildings in the world exceeded in height only by the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and the Sears (now Willis) Tower in Chicago but it subsequently was surpassed by a number of taller buildings, including the Shanghai World Financial Center, its neighbour in the Pudong district of Shanghai.

The building’s foundation consists of a concrete slab 13 feet (4 metres) thick atop hundreds of steel pilings sunk some 260 feet (80 metres) into the ground below. Support for the building includes 16 large exterior columns, composed of a combination of 8 steel and 8 steel and reinforced-concrete columns , and an octagonal-shaped inner reinforced-concrete core, the two structures connected through a series of radiating beams, forming trusslike structures.

The exterior is sheathed in a glass curtain wall, over which is a lattice of metal pipes. The design of the building is similar to that of the two Petronas structures in its use of the number eight (that being an auspicious number in both countries) as a motif, while it also evokes elements of traditional Chinese architecture.

The Jin Mao Tower

The Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai.

Beginning with a square base of 16 floors, the building’s 88 occupied floors rise in a series of 16 tiers. Each of the first 11 of these tiers above the base has progressively fewer floors than the one below and flares outward slightly at its top in the manner of a pagoda-style roof.

The tower has the best elevators available. Two direct elevators operate at the speed of 9.1 meters (nearly 30 feet) per second that can send visitors from the ground floor to the 88th floor for only 45 seconds. There are also five to six elevators every 10 floors, which reduce waiting-time to 35 seconds even during rush hours.


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