London’s glassy Shard is the best new skyscraper in the world, according to the latest ranking from international building database Emporis.
The Renzo Piano-designed building was selected by a panel of international experts from more than 300 skyscrapers (at least 100 meters high) that were completed during the previous calendar year.
The Shard has not been without its fair share of controversy: Londoners hated the building when it first appeared on the city’ skyline, and a design flaw in the building apparently lets guests see into each other’s rooms at The Shard’s Shangri-La Hotel.
Even so, the building is an impressive sight. “Construction of The Shard was complicated by the particularly tight site and therefore needed innovative planning,” an Emporis jury member said. “This makes the result all the more impressive: A skyscraper that is recognised immediately and which is already considered London’s new emblem.”
#10 (TIE) TOUR CARPE DIEM -- This building in Courbevoie, France runs on geothermal wells and has a sustainable design that includes solar water heating, high-performance lighting, and more. The bar of the rooftop garden has views over Paris and the river Seine.
#10 (TIE) NANFUNG COMMERCIAL, THE HOSPITALITY AND EXHIBITION COMPLEX -- The complex, in Guangzhou, China, offers exhibition space, offices and a 5-star hotel with the city's biggest ballroom.
#9 AZ TOWER -- Located in downtown Brno, Czech Republic, the AZ Tower houses office, retail, and residential spaces. The speckled orange and white facade makes the building stand out in the city's skyline.
#8 ARDMORE RESIDENCE -- This Singapore residential building uses energy- and water-efficient systems.
#7 MERCURY CITY -- This 75-story tower in Moscow is designed to use less water and electricity by collecting melting water. The tallest building in Europe, it features two high-speed elevators that travel 23 feet per second.
#6 FLAME TOWERS -- The tallest skyscraper in Baku, Azerbaijan at 620 feet, these towers are completely covered with LED screens to make them look like giant torches of flickering flames at night.
#5 ONE CENTRAL PARK EAST -- With vertical gardens on each floor of this Sydney, Australia building, One Central Park's East Tower looks out on a spacious park. It also features restaurants, shopping, and other luxury amenities for residents.
#4 CAYAN TOWER -- Also known as the Infinity Tower, this 80-story building in Dubai has a twisted shape that reduce wind forces on the tower.
#3 SHERATON HUZHOU HOT SPRING RESORT -- A luxury hotel and resort in Huzhou, China, the horseshoe-shaped Sheraton has 19,000 LED lights that illuminate it at night. Its unique shape also allows all the rooms to have balconies and views.
#2 DC TOWER 1 -- This eco-friendly building in Vienna has water-saving showers and restrooms, and runs on green electricity. It's currently the tallest building in Austria.
#1 THE SHARD -- This year's winner was the 87-story London Shard, which has an angled glass façcade that reflects light patterns across the surface. Standing 1,004 feet high, The Shard is currently the tallest building in the European Union.
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