Architect discusses world's tallest building plan

Kingdom Holding's decision to move forward with plans to build the world's tallest tower in Jeddah does have a reasonable financial rationalisation, says Adrian Smith, the tower's architect.

The 1000-metre tower will act as "a catalyst" for the surrounding development, argues Mr Smith, who also helped design the Burj Khalifa, the world's current tallest building.

"Putting such a tall tower in first actually increases the land value around the tower," Mr Smith told the Huffington Post. "So even if you don't make a lot of money on the tower itself you'll make money on the land."

The three-sided needle design for the tower was inspired by palm trees, which grow to a point before the fronds unfurl, he said.

Another tidbit from the interview: The "sky terrace," one of the tower's most distinctive features, started off as a helipad. But pilots warned it would be difficult to land at that height.

The full interview can be found here.

Published: August 3, 2011 04:00 AM