A new record tower.
If you’re afraid of heights, this may be a story you want to skip. The Guinness Book of World Records recently certified that the tallest tower in the world is indeed the Sky Tree which stands in Tokyo, Japan. A work in progress since 2006, the Sky Tree was constructed to be a radio and television tower while at the same time helping to revitalize tourism after the earthquakes and tsunami the country experienced. Sporting two observation decks, at 1,148 feet and 1,476 feet, tourists are guaranteed to get a spectacular view of the city.
Measuring in at 2,080 feet, the tower cost $440 million to construct. It has thirteen elevators, a restaurant, and shopping. What is interesting is that because it has less than 50% usable floor space, it fell into a different category with Guinness than the Burj Khalifa building in Dubai. It’s because the Sky Tree is technically not a building but a tower, it captured it’s own world record…
You may be saying to yourself, “Why in the world would you build such a big tower in the middle of an earthquake-prone region?” Representatives of the project have assured the public that the Sky Tree can withstand quakes of up to 8.0 in magnitude. Let’s hope they never have to test out their precautions.
With nine different television broadcasters and three FM transmitters, the Sky Tree’s main purpose is to enable terrestrial broadcasting to the city again, as the current towers are surrounded by tall buildings which block the signal. Interesting to note, the height of the tower was picked to be easy for people to remember. For those of you smart enough to use the metric system, the translated height is 634 meters. The figures 6 (mu), 3 (sa), 4 (shi) when translated into Japanese stand for “Musashi” an old name of the region where the Tokyo Sky Tree stands.