The Best New Tall Buildings On The Planet

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitats (CTBUH) recently announced the winners of its Best Tall Buildings Worldwide contest.

They declared four regional winners, as well as several finalists. An overall winner will announced on November 6.

The qualities they’re looking for are a strong sustainability commitment, adding to the urban environment, and challenging the traditional perceptions of tall buildings.

The Council received 88 entries from around the world for the awards with the the largest entries from Asia and Europe.

WINNER (Asia & Australasia): One Central Park, Sydney. The most unique part of this 384-foot-tall residential building is the growth of plants around the outside, which the architects use for shading and to direct sunlight to save energy.

By Ateliers Jean Nouvel and PTW Architects

WINNER (Americas): Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building, Portland. Standing at 361 feet tall, this office tower was renovated from its original 1970 design into a lightweight, sustainable epicentre.

By Cutler Anderson Architects and SERA Architects.

WINNER (Europe): DeRotterdam, Rotterdam. At 489 feet, the mixed-use building is the largest in the Netherlands. The three towers will be used for offices, apartments, a hotel, conference facilities, shops, restaurants, and cafes.

By Office for Metropolitan Architecture

WINNER (Middle East & Africa): Cayan Tower, Dubai. This residential tower is a 75-story luxury apartment building. Its helical shape turns 90 degrees over the course of its 1,005-foot height, so no room is facing the same way as the one above or below.

By Skidmore Owings & Merrill and Khatib & Alami.

FINALIST (Americas): The Point, Ecuador. At 448 feet tall, the new office building is the tallest building in Ecuador and is meant to represent the flow of the water in the Guayas River.

By Christian Wiese

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): 8 Chifley, Sydney. At 461 feet, this is office building not only creates a public park below, but 'vertical villages' for work day socializing.

By Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners and Lippmann Partnership.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Abeno Harukas, Japan. At 984 feet tall, this office building/hotel/retail center is the tallest in Japan. However, its biggest accomplishment is making space for greenery with sunlit sky lobbies and an open-air courtyard.

By Takenaka Corporation

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Ardmore Residence, Singapore. This 445-foot-tall apartment building integrates the landscape through organic textures and patterns.

By UN Studio and Architects 61 Private.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): FKI tower, Seoul. The 805-foot-tall FKI Tower is the fifth-tallest building in Seoul and features an exterior wall that helps reduce internal heating/cooling and collects energy.

By Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture and Chang-Jo Architects.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Ideo Morph 38, Bangkok. Ideo Morph 38 is 434-feet-tall and consists of two residential towers unified by an outer 'tree bark' skin of precast panels and green walls.

By H. Engineer and Westcon Co., Ltd.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Jockey Club Innovation Tower, Hong Kong. Standing only 234 feet tall, the new school of design building for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University has internal and external courtyards and athletic facilities.

By Zaha Hadid Architects and AD+RG Architecture Design and Research Group; AGC Design.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Sheraton Tai Lake Resort, China. This 335-foot-tall ring-shaped hotel provides all the rooms with waterfront and city views, and is reflected on the Nan Tai Lake.


FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): The Interlace, Singapore. These stacked apartment buildings stand at 308 feet tall and are designed for 'changing perspective, meeting new neighbours, or finding a longer way home.'

By Office for Metropolitan Architecture and RSP Architects Sdn Bhd.

FINALIST (Asia & Australasia): Wangjing SOHO, Beijing. The Wangjing SOHO Project consists of 656-foot-tall office towers that are designed to reflect the constant movement of the 'city, the sun, and the wind' in Beijing.

By Zaha Hadid Architects and China Construction Design International.

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