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Last Updated: Monday, 25 July 2005, 11:14 GMT 12:14 UK
Moscow to join tallest tower club
A Chinese construction firm has signed a deal to build an 87-storey tower in Moscow, which the developers say will be the tallest in Europe.

See an artist's impression of the Federation Complex tower

A Turkish firm - Ant Yapi - is already building the foundations for the $530m (305m) Federation Complex.

The tower will soar to 340 metres (1,115 feet), attached to a stiletto-like central spire. There will be a neighbouring 53-storey tower.

The complex will house offices, luxury flats, a hotel and leisure facilities.

The developer, Russia's Mirax Group, says the glass-clad towers will have state-of-the-art design features which will protect them against any 9/11-style terrorist attack.

"Regardless of how many planes hit it, it won't fall down," said Mirax president Sergei Polonsky, quoted by the Associated Press.

Construction site for Federation Complex, Moscow
Height: 340m
Total area: 346,770 sq m
Location: "Moscow City" business centre, Krasnopresnenskaya embankment
Owner: Mirax-City joint stock company

Mirax signed a construction contract in Beijing on Monday with the Chinese Engineering Construction Corporation. The work is expected to take two years, Itar-Tass news agency reports.

The skyscraper was designed by German architects Peter Schweger and Sergei Tchoban.

They say the structure will be fire-resistant for 10 hours.

Currently the tallest building in Europe is Frankfurt's 260-metre Commerzbank tower.

Funding for the project came from Vneshtorgbank, which will occupy 30 storeys of the tallest skyscraper. Ten other major Russian firms will also have offices in the building, Russia's RIA Novosti news agency reports.

The Hyatt hotel chain plans to turn 44 floors into a five-star hotel.

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