Skylines Transformed | The B1M

Skylines Transformed  | The B1M

The construction industry shapes our world. In no other place is this more pronounced
than in our cities, where cultural and economic factors drive extreme development. Over centuries, our cities have grown, evolved,
risen, and reformed to become the thriving hubs that billions of us call home today. But some have been on more radical journeys
than others. Here, we’ve travelled from East to West and brought you our picks of
the world’s greatest skyline transformations. Before we begin it’s important to underline
the fact that our choices here are purely subjective, and to explain that – as a common
starting point – we have considered the transformation of each city since the construction of its
first skyscraper up until the present day. Otherwise you could consider almost any city
to have been considerably transformed since its original founding. We’re starting off in the Land Down Under
with what is arguably now one of the world’s most photogenic cities. Famed for its iconic opera house and arched
bridge set upon the world’s deepest natural harbour, Sydney has transformed considerably
since its first skyscraper was built in 1967. The 170 metre (557 foot) Australia Square
was the first building in Australia to rise more than 150 metres in height and paved the
way for further skyscraper construction across the country. Since then, Sydney’s skyline has grown to
become Australia’s densest with the 309 metre (1,014 foot) Sydney Tower rising at
its centre. The city looks set to continue its transformation
in the years ahead with a vast redevelopment of the disused Barangaroo docks district and
construction of the 271 metre (889 foot) Crown Sydney, which will become the city’s tallest
building when it completes in 2021. Despite being a key economic hub for the Asia-Pacific
region since the early 20th century, Shanghai’s transformation only occurred relatively recently. With economic restrictions between non-communist
countries in place since the 1950’s, it wasn’t until 1988 that Shanghai got its first
true skyscraper, the 153 metre Jin Jiang Tower. Following significant economic reforms in
the early 1990s, Shanghai has been a driving force in China’s economy, attracting huge
levels of investment that have transformed the skyline into one of the world’s most
recognisable cityscapes. Up until the 1960s, Dubai was little more
than a cluster of fishing and port towns on the coast of the Persian Gulf. With the discovery of oil and the revenue
that came with it, Dubai began to gradually develop, focusing on building up its infrastructure
for shipping and oil extraction. The city’s first skyscraper, the 184 metre (604 foot)
Dubai World Trade Centre was built in 1979. By the early 1990’s, Dubai’s government
realised they needed to overhaul the Emirates’ economy and diversify its key revenue streams
before oil reserves ran dry. This led to billions being invested into the
tourism and services sectors and with the completion of the wave-shaped Jumeriah Beach
Hotel in 1997 and the iconic 321 metre (1,053 foot) Burj Al Arab Hotel in 1999, the Dubai
we all know today was born. With the construction boom that followed,
Dubai’s population grew from just 670,000 people in 1995, to over 2.6 million in 2018.
Now, the city is home to the world’s current tallest building; the 828 metre (2,717 foot)
Burj Khalifa. With Dubai’s skyline barely 20 years old,
the city is set to continue its evolution over the next decade. One particularly notable
project in the pipeline is the expansive Dubai Creek Redevelopment – set to feature a 3,000
foot tower at its centre. Watching over the city since 1931, Rio’s
Christ the Redeemer statue has witnessed the city’s transformation first hand. With a population of just over 800,000 in
1900, Rio de Janeiro is now home to over 7.5 million people. While not reaching the heights of other cities
on our list, Brazil’s former capital has flourished into a sea of white high rises
that occupy almost every bit of suitable terrain. Since the completion of its first skyscraper
in 1908, the 186 metre (612 foot) Singer Building, New York City has been home to more of the
world’s tallest buildings than any other city, taking the title from itself six times between
1908 and 1974. Among these historic giants, the Chrysler
Building and Empire State Building dominated the skyline from the early 1930s, and were
joined by the twin towers of the World Trade Centre between 1970 and 2001. Since 2002, 44 skyscrapers have been built
across the city, including New York City’s tallest building, the 541 metre (1,776 foot)
One World Trade Centre. More recently, super-skinny high rise residential towers have sought to
maximise floor area and return on investment from some of the city’s smallest parcels
of land. Finally, at the most westerly edge of our
journey, we have a city that redefines transformation. Founded in 1905, Las Vegas has gone from a
desert rest stop alongside a railroad, to the entertainment capital of the world. With an influx of workers from the construction
of the Hoover Dam in 1930’s, Vegas became infamous for its drinking, gambling and adult
entertainment, earning it the nickname “Sin City”. By the 1950’s gaming had become big business
and hotels and casinos began competing for attention along the emerging Las Vegas Strip. Perhaps as famous for its demolitions as it
is for its reputation, Las Vegas has seen several hotels levelled and replaced with
larger and ever more lavish resorts. Ironically the city’s first true skyscraper
to break the 150 metre threshold was the New York, New York Hotel and Casino in 1997 standing
161 metres (or 529 feet) tall. Of the cities 40 tallest buildings, 39 have
built since 1997, including the Bellagio, Wynn Resort, Trump International and the Cosmopolitan. Together with the 350 metre (1,150 foot) Stratosphere,
a half-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower and the world’s tallest observation wheel, the
High Roller, Las Vegas’ skyline is truly a never-ending story of transformation. If you enjoyed this video and would like to get more from the definitive video channel for construction, Subscribe to The B1M.

4 thoughts on “Skylines Transformed | The B1M

  1. Where is Turkey, Istanbul City ?

  2. nice vid but Africa was not mentioned we have johannesburg with carton centre having the tallest building in the southern hemisphere

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