World’s Tallest Building: The Burj Khalifa, Dubai | Important Facts and Figures


Burj Khalifa compare
Rises like a bolt of lightning into the sky, dwarfing the surrounding skyscrapers Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is the tallest building in the world, taller than the previous record-holder, the Taipei 101 having 101 floors and height of 449 m, 509 m to tip.

Burj Khalifa is Dubai’s pride. It signifies how far the desert country has come in short 50-years.

Burj Khalifa, formerly known as the Burj Dubai, is the tallest building in the world or the tallest existing man-made structure in the world, Soaring at 829.8 m (2,722 ft) above the metropolis of Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The tip of the Spire of the Burj Khalifa can be seen from 95 kilometers (60 miles) away.


Purpose: Multipurpose Use: Hotel, Office, Residential Apartments, Observation, Communication

Location: 1 Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Construction Details

Construction Started: 6 January 2004

Construction Cost: USD $ 1.5 billion

Construction Completed: 30 December 2009

Inauguration Date: 04. 01. 2010

Main Contractor: Samsung C&T Corporation, Arabtec Construction, Besix Construction Company

Owner: Emaar Properties

Architectural Details

Materials: Glass, Steel, Aluminium, Reinforced concrete.

Height: 829.8 m

Spire Height: 244 m

Top Floor Height: 584.5 m Floor 154

Observatory Height: 555.7 m Floor 148

Architect: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) with Adrian Smith

About Burj Khalifa

The project was announced in early 2003, built at a cost of USD $ 1.5 billion, the Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. It is a mixed-use building featuring Hotel, Office, Residential Apartments, Observation and Communication. The height of the building was kept private until the building’s completion in 2010.

Floors – The Burj Khalifa has 163 habitable floors (upper 8 for maintenance purpose) plus 46 inhabitable floors (spire levels) above sea level, more than any building in the world. The height of the top floor is 584.5 m (1,918 ft) at Level 154.

Observatory – The Burj Khalifa has the World’s highest Observatory at height-555.7 m Floor 148

Rooms – The Burj Khalifa includes a 304 rooms Giorgio Armani hotel, 900 residences including studios and one, two, three, and four-bedroom apartments.

Restaurant – World’s highest restaurant at 442 m Floor 122

Swimming pools – Is also offers luxurious recreational and leisure facilities including four swimming pools, excluding the pool in the hotel, lounges for home and office owners, health and wellness facilities.

Navigation – It has 57 elevators (55 single deck and 2 double deck), 8 escalators, 3 Sky lobbies located on Floors 43, 76 and 123.

Interior – Over 500 pieces of art by prominent international and Middle Eastern artists adorn the interiors of Burj. Many of the pieces have been specially commissioned by Emaar as a tribute to the spirit of global harmony.

The design for the tower combines local cultural influences with cutting-edge technology to achieve high performance in an extreme desert climate. The skyscraper is surrounded by green space, water features, and pedestrian-friendly boulevards.

Burj Khalifa is the centerpiece of the new 2 km2 (490-acre) development called Downtown Dubai at the ‘First Interchange’ along Sheikh Zayed Road, near Dubai’s main business district.

The Emaar properties are the developer and owner of the Burj Khalifa. The tower officially opened on 4 January 2010.

Burj Khalifa underlines the can-do spirit of Dubai. Described as both a ‘Vertical City’ and ‘A Living Wonder,’ Burj Khalifa rises gracefully from the desert, honouring the city with its extraordinary union of art, engineering, and meticulous craftsmanship.

-Emmar Properties

Design and Architecture

The tower was designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM) of Chicago, who also designed the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) in Chicago and The New World Trade Center in New York City, with Adrian Smith as chief architect.

The tower’s overall design was inspired by the Hymenocallis flower and patterning systems embodied in Islamic architecture. The tower is composed of three elements arranged around a central buttressed core, which consists of a hexagonal core reinforced by three buttresses that form the ‘Y’ shape.
The building’s Y-shaped plan maximizes both structural integrity and good floor plates for residential. The floors are arranged in a helical (spiral) formation, reduce ‘wind load’ which increases with height and also it produces an aerodynamic shape that helps reduce structural loading due to wind vortex shedding, that would rock the tower from side to side and could even damage the building. There are 27 setbacks in a spiralling pattern, decreasing the cross section of the tower as it reaches toward the sky and creating convenient outdoor terraces. At the pinnacle, the central core emerges and is sculpted to form a spire.

The result is an elegant, cost-efficient and highly constructible design taking advantage of new and innovative thinking about technology, building materials, life-cycle considerations and energy conservation.

Construction details

The Samsung C&T Corporation of South Korea was chosen as the main construction contractor, which also did work on the Petronas Twin Towers and Taipei 101. The tower’s construction was done by Samsung C&T Corporation in a joint venture with Besix from Belgium and Arabtec from UAE.

The tower’s engineering is performed by Bill Baker as chief structural engineer.

The Burj Khalifa is like a Swiss watch, every part working together to resist the forces of nature such as wind, seismic and gravity. Yet forces like gravity are comparatively simple to deal with. Gravitational forces pull the skyscraper in only one, quite predictable, direction: down. But high-altitude winds swirl and jostle in complex and uncertain ways, whipping into eddies and vortices that put all different kinds of stress on the structure.

-Bill Baker

The tower Construction started on 6 January 2004, with the exterior of the structure completed on 1 October 2009. With a total built-up area of 5.67 million sq ft, it features 1.85 million sq ft of residential space and over 300,000 sq ft of prime office space. That is in addition to the area occupied by the Armani Hotel Dubai and the Armani Residences.

Over 45,000 m3 (58,900 cu yd) of concrete, weighing more than 110,000 tonnes were used to construct the concrete and steel foundation, which features 192 piles, each pile is 1.5 metre diameter x 43 m long, buried more than 50 m (164 ft) deep.

Over 330,000 cubic meters of concrete and 39,000 metric tonnes of steel rebar was used at the completion of the tower and construction took 22 million man-hours. Burj Khalifa has an empty weight of 500,000 tons.

During the peak of construction, at least 12,000 workers worked on the construction site per day.

With the 24,348 windows, totaling 120,000 m2 (1,290,000 sq ft) of glass The exterior cladding, comprised aluminum and textured stainless steel spandrel panels with reflective glazing and vertical tubular fins, was designed to withstand Dubai’s extreme temperatures during the summer months by using a Low-E glass to provide enhanced thermal insulation. Vertical polished stainless steel fins were added to accentuate Burj Khalifa’s height and slenderness.

The spire of Burj Khalifa is composed of more than 4,000 tonnes of structural steel. The central pinnacle pipe weighing 350 tonnes was constructed from inside the building and jacked to its full height of over 200 m (660 ft) using a strand jack system. The spire also houses communications equipment.

Burj khalifa consists of a car park to service 3000 cars.

Facts and Figures

  • Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world with an architectural height of 2716.5 feet or 828.0 meters. The tip of the Spire of the Burj Khalifa can be seen from 95 kilometers (60 miles) away.

  • Aside from holding the World Record for being the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa holds six other World Records: tallest freestanding structure in the world, highest number of stories in the world, highest occupied floor in the world, highest outdoor observation deck in the world, elevator with longest travel distance in the world, and tallest service elevator in the world.

  • The Burj Dubai had its name officially changed to Burj Khalifa at the last minute to honor Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan, the ruler of Abu Dhabi for bailing out Dubai’s bankrupt sovereign wealth fund with a $10 billion in 2009.

  • The tower sits on a man-made lake known as the burj Khalifa Lake, which wraps around the building and offers dramatic and breathtaking views of the building. The lake consist of the world’s largest dancing fountain known as the Dubai fountain, 275 m (902.2 ft) long with water jets that shoot up to 152.4 m (500 ft) in the air, as high as a 45-storey building.

  • Burj Khalifa has the longest single running elevator, which is 140 floors and the second fastest elevators in the world with a speed of 700m/min (42.3 km/h / 26.1 mp/h). It took us approximately only one minute to reach the observation deck on the 124th floor. The Elevator manufacturer is Otis.

  • The curtain wall area of Burj Khalifa is equivalent to 17 football fields. The cladding of Burj Khalifa contains 24,348 individually cut glass panels, it will take 36 workers three to four months to clean the entire exterior façade.

  • Burj Khalifa has one of the largest condensate recovery systems in the world. It can recover 15 million gallons of water per year which is enough to fill 20 Olympic size swimming pools.

  • The Burj Khalifa’s water system supplies an average of 946,000 L (250,000 US gal) of water per day through 100 km (62 mi) of pipes.An additional 213 km (132 mi) of piping serves the fire emergency system, and 34 km (21 mi) supplies chilled water for the air conditioning system. The waste water system uses gravity to discharge water from plumbing fixtures, floor drains, mechanical equipment and storm water, to the city municipal sewer.

  • It is said that the weight of concrete used to build the skyscraper is equivalent to 100,000 elephants and the steel used to construct the frame is equal to that of 5 Airbus 380 aircrafts.

  • In just 1,325 days since excavation work started in January, 2004, Burj Khalifa became the tallest free-standing structure in the world. Construction Highlights.

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