Saudi Arabia will soon begin construction on the world's next tallest building: the Kingdom Tower.
Prepared to bump the Burj Dubai from its sky-high ranking, the futuristic Kingdom Tower will be built in Jeddah, a commercially-minded, cosmopolitan port city along the Red Sea. While the Burj Khalifa, completed in 2010, shoots up to 2,717 feet, the Kingdom Tower will surpass the Burj by over 560 feet, rising to a record 3,281 feet tall, according to Chicago-based Adrian Smith and Gordon Grill, the team that dreamed up the design.
Remarkably, the team actually hoped to make the structure a mile high, though those plans were scratched due to concerns that arose in soil testing for the site.
The triangular tower is set to be the focal point of Kingdom City, a sprawling urban development in north Jeddah that will reportedly cost upwards of 20 billion.
Jeddah's tower will serve as both a cultural and religious symbol for the city, which is known as the "gateway to Mecca" due to its proximity to the Islamic holy city.
The sleek, streamlined form of the tower was inspired by the folded fronds of young desert plant growth.
According to a statement on the builder's Web site:
"This tower symbolizes the Kingdom as an important global business and cultural leader, and demonstrates the strength and creative vision of its people. It represents new growth and high-performance technology fused into one powerful iconic form. "
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Kingdom Tower will have 59 elevators traveling at over 33 feet per second (22 miles per hour).
Among the many things the building will house, there will be a Four Seasons hotel, ultra-luxurious condos, upscale office space, a dramatic "sky terrace" at level 157, and the world's soon-to-be tallest observatory.
While very little has actually been built, there are a slew of sleek looking images of the world's soon-to-be tallest building.
Have a look: