Since the beginning of recorded history, people have had the desire to build. Early humans erected the 28-foot tall Tower of Jericho roughly 11,000 years ago. It is believed to have been the tallest manmade structure in the world for millennia. The desire to create and build has never abated, and the technology needed to do so has finally caught up.
Construction cranes, the elevator, and countless other mechanical advancements made skyscrapers feasible to build and use. Now that the technology is available across the globe, there are dozens of buildings worldwide that stretch more than 1,000 feet toward the sky — and two that are more than 2,000 feet tall.
24/7 Wall St. reviewed data from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat to determine the 50 tallest buildings in the world.
For many years, the U.S. has dominated the world skyscraper rankings. The Empire State Building held the title as the tallest manmade structure from its completion in 1931 until it was unseated in 1972 by the World Trade Center’s twin towers, which were then surpassed two years later by Chicago’s Sears Tower, now known as Willis Tower.
Now, many of the world’s tallest buildings are in Asia and the Middle East, thanks to a new wave of skyscraper construction in those regions. Of the world’s 50 tallest buildings, 28 were completed in 2011 or later. China is home to 20 of the world’s 50 tallest buildings. The United Arab Emirates ranks second with 13, and the U.S. has seven. Malaysia, Taiwan, and Russia both appear on this list twice, while Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Vietnam each have one of the 50 largest buildings in the world.
To determine the 50 tallest buildings, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. Only finished buildings were considered.