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Tuesday, 2 October, 2001, 11:58 GMT 12:58 UK
China presses on with tallest tower
Petronas twin towers, Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur currently has the world record
Plans are going ahead to build the world's tallest building in China despite security concerns in the wake of the attacks on the World Trade Center.

There has been widespread speculation following the attacks on the New York twin towers, that the skyscraper age was over.

Mock-up of the proposed tower in Shanghai (copyright Mori Building Co/Kohn Pedersen Fox)
Mock-up of the proposed tower in Shanghai
But a spokesman for the Japanese consortium behind the Shanghai project, the Mori Building Company, said plans were being reviewed to make the building "better, stronger and safer".

The planned Shanghai World Financial Centre in the eastern city of Shanghai, is to reach 460 metres (1,509 feet).

It is hoped the building will open before Beijing hosts the 2008 Olympics.

Mori Building Company, said the 11 September attacks, in which two hijacked passenger jets were flown into the 110-storey World Trade Center, had not altered the plans.

"The terrorist attacks were extremely regrettable. But the case was totally an exception, which no one was able to expect," said company spokesman Kiyoshi Yoshikawa.

"Mori Building plans to continue going ahead with the project as scheduled."

Safety features

If completed as planned in 2007, the 94-storey Shanghai tower would take the title of world's tallest building from Malaysia's Petronas twin towers, at 452 meters (1,492 feet). The building is forecast to cost $625m.

World's tallest buildings
Petronas twin towers, Kuala Lumpur: 452m
Sears Tower, Chicago: 442m
Jinmao Tower, Shanghai 421m
The glassy building, with a round hole near its top to relieve wind pressure, is to be built just blocks from the 88-storey Jinmao Tower, currently China's tallest building and the third tallest in the world.

However, under a review process that has been going on since October 1998, the firm said it would look into measures to improve the security of the building.

"It is very clear we will strengthen the structure of the building. We will improve the security of the building," said Kiyoshi Yoshikawa.

The existing plans for the new building include a dedicated fire lift and refuge floors at every 15 levels.

Refuge floors contain no furniture and are designed to be totally fire proof so that they can harbour people in the middle of an evacuation.

See also:

21 Sep 01 | Business
What is the future for skyscrapers?
21 Sep 01 | Americas
Bush raises stakes
14 May 00 | Middle East
Saudi opens first skyscraper
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