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Top Ten Skyscrapers 2012: 8 Spruce Street wins this year Emporis Skyscraper Award

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The top ten skyscrapers of the year were named yesterday with a stunning New York residential block taking top spot.

Eight Spruce Street, in Manhattan, picked up the Emporis Skyscraper Award where judges chose the best buildings which were completed in 2011.

The 76-storey tower, designed by Frank Gehry, is the 12th largest tallest residential block stretching 265-metres into the sky.

Its stunning design consist of cladding made up of 10,500 stainless steel panels, almost all of them different shapes.


This means that as you move around, its shape constantly changes – with judges saying the building “stands out even in Manhattan’s already remarkable skyline”.

Spruce Street beat a field of 220 in the annual Oscars of Architecture with the 412-metre high Al Hamra Tower in Kuwait taking second place.

The tower was praised for the way it was engineered to take account of the blistering heat with the south facade, with limestone elements cladding a concrete wall, protects the building from the searing desert sun.

Judges were also impressed with both the building’s architectural and functional points of view.

With lifts operating at the speed of an Olympic sprinter, the Al Hamra was praised for its deep sculpted, angled windows in the south wall which give views across the city and peninsula to the desert.

Third place went to the Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi, with the huge complex made up of three residential towers, one office tower and one hotel tower which houses the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers hotel.

And the KK100 in Shenzhen, China took top spot with the 441-metre high tower the tallest building ever realized by a British firm.

KK100, designed by Terry Farrell & Partners, has a curved shape which is intended to “evoke a spring or fountain” and therefore symbolize the area’s wealth and prosperity.

The Chinese skyscraper shared fourth spot with the Victoria Tower in Stockholm and Great American Tower in Cincinnati.

Costing $322 million, the 202-metre Great American Tower was inspired by a photograph of a tiara worn by Diana, Princess of Wales.

Emporis, which is a German database of information on building and construction projects, has been holding the awards since 2000.

Last year the Hotel Porta Fira in Barcelona picked up the prestigious award.

TOP TEN TOWERS COMPLETED IN 2011

  • 8 Spruce Street, New York City, 265.1 metres, 76 stories
  • Al Hamra Tower, Kuwait City, 412 metres, 80 stories
  • Etihad Towers, Abu Dhabi, 217.5 – 305.3 metres, 56-79 stories
  • KK100, Shenzhen, 441.8 metres, 100 stories
  • Victoria Tower, Stockholm is 117.6 metres, 34 stories
  • Great American Tower, Cincinnati, 202.69-metres, 41 stories
  • F&F Tower, Panama City, 242.9 metres, 52 stories
  • Northeast Asia Trade Tower, Incheon, 308 metres, 68 stories
  • Reflections at Keppel Bay, Singapore, 120 – 178 metres, 21-41 stories
  • Tianjin Global Financial Centre, Tianjin, 336.9 metres, 72 stories

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