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Xinyi, Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei 101 (Chinese: 臺北101 / 台北101), formerly known as the Taipei World Financial Center, is a landmark skyscraper located in Xinyi District, Taipei, Taiwan. The building ranked officially as the world's tallest from 2004 until the opening of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai in 2010. In July 2011, the building was awarded LEED Platinum certification, the highest award in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system and became the tallest and largest green building in the world. Taipei 101 was designed by C.Y. Lee & partners and constructed primarily by KTRT Joint Venture.
The construction was finished in 2004. The tower has served as an icon of modern Taiwan ever since its opening. Fireworks launched from Taipei 101 feature prominently in international New Year's Eve broadcasts and the structure appears frequently in travel literature and international media.
The Taipei 101 tower has 101 floors above ground and five underground. Upon its completion Taipei 101 claimed the official records for:
Ground to highest architectural structure (spire): 508 m (1,667 ft). Previously held by the Petronas Towers 451.9 m (1,483 ft).
Ground to roof: 449.2 m (1,474 ft). Formerly held by the Willis Tower 442 m (1,450 ft).
Taipei 101 is designed to withstand the typhoon winds and earthquake tremors common in its area of the Asia-Pacific. Planners aimed for a structure that could withstand gale winds of 60 m/s (197 ft/s, 216 km/h or 134 mph) and the strongest earthquakes likely to occur in a 2,500 year cycle.
Skyscrapers must be flexible in strong winds yet remain rigid enough to prevent large sideways movement. Flexibility prevents structural damage while resistance ensures comfort for the occupants and protection of glass, curtain walls and other features. Most designs achieve the necessary strength by enlarging critical structural elements such as bracing. The height of Taipei 101 combined with the demands of its environment called for additional innovations.
Taipei 101 is the first record-setting skyscraper to be constructed in the 21st century. It exhibits a number of technologically advanced features as it provides a center for business and recreation. The original 2004 fiber-optic and satellite Internet connections permitted transfer speeds up to a gigabyte per second.