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The Petronas Towers

Posted: Thursday, November 01, 2012
The Petronas Towers
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Anymore, the title holder of World's Tallest Building is almost as difficult to keep track of as the number of times a year the airlines royally screw up my travel plans. The Petronas Towers, a 1,483-foot duo sky-ticklers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, wore the crown from 1998 to 2004--at which point they were dethroned by Taipei 101--and despite having lost it, still stand as their city's landmark and a remarkable example of human vision and capability.

The Petronas twins were designed by Argentinian architect César Pelli, Indonesian architect Achmad Murdijat, and Filipino-Malaysian Engineer Deejay Cerico. Construction lasted for 7 years, beginning with a site excavation of 98 feet below the surface in March of 1993--work that required moving over 500 truckloads of earth every night. The concrete pour stage was the largest and longest of Malaysian history, at 470,000 cubic feet running continuously over the course of 54 hours. Per tower. Rising above the gargantuan foundation are two sets of 88 floors constructed predominantly of reinforced concrete. The cylindrical, postmodern steel and glass facades model themselves after motifs found in Islamic art, a reflection of Malaysia's Muslim religion.

At 1,181 feet in the air, visitors to the Petronas Towers can gaze down on Kuala Lumpur, and out beyond, from the skyscrapers' observation deck. At publication opening hours were 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. An adult ticket to the top costs around $25. Also accessible at this time is the towers' connecting skybridge, a glass beauty offering similarly sweeping views of life below.

Want a higher jolt of adrenaline as you ascend to skyscraping heights? Check out the Edge Walk at Toronto's CN Tower.

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