Holding the distinction of having the world’s tallest building is a coveted milestone for designers, builders, and countries alike, but no one has been able to top the 2,722 foot tall Burj Khalifa yet, since it opened in early 2010. The 2nd tallest tower in the world, the Shanghai Tower, opened 5 years later and stands 2,073 feet tall. Just recently, two more gigantic buildings opened their doors, taking over the 4th and 5th spots on the list for tallest in the world, pushing America’s One World Trade Center into 6th place.
The first to open was the 1,965 foot tall (599m) Ping An Finance Center in Shenzhen China. Designed by supertall building experts Kohn Pederson Fox, the building features 100 floors of office space, as well as a central atrium with retail and restaurants.
Although the Ping An did not break the record for being the world’s tallest, it still holds the record for largest stainless steel facade. Over 1,700 tons of 316L stainless steel was used for the exterior, which Building Design + Construction explained was due to its corrosion resistance against harsh coastal atmosphere of Shenzhen.
Shortly after the Ping An opened up, the Lotte World Tower in Seoul, South Korea officially became the new 5th tallest tower in the world. At 1,819 feet tall, it trails the Ping An by just a little over 100 feet and was also designed by Kohn Pederson Fox.
Like the Ping An, the Lotte also holds a few records of its own, including having the world’s highest glass-bottomed observation deck, the world’s highest swimming pool, and the world’s fastest elevator, according to Building Design + Construction. The observation deck is located on the 118th floor, which 1,640 feet in the air. The swimming pool is stationed way up on the 85th floor and the elevator can take passengers to the top of the building from the ground floor in around 60 seconds.
New Mexico, our nation's 47th state, lands at #32 on our continued state-by-state countdown. After adjusting for the state's lower cost of living (5.9% lower than national average), New Mexico jumped roughly 8 spots on the list. There were 3 construction professions ranked in the top 10 versus all other states, including solar panel installers, reinforcing iron and rebar workers, and welders.
Last Monday, a 13-story building in Miami Beach was in the process of being manually demolished when the building suddenly came crashing down, some of it horizontally, and critically injured 1 of the demolition contractor’s project managers. There have been some developments in the story that we would like to update you on.
I promised myself that I wasn't going to mention potatoes, so I won't. That doesn't count. Coming in at #33 in our countdown is the state of Idaho, often referred to as the "Gem State." Boosted by their relatively low cost of living at 8.7% below the national average, Idaho jumped 11 spots after adjustment.
There are a ton of songs about the city of New York, but that unfortunately doesn't help the state in our countdown. Despite having the 4th highest cost of living, at 31.6% higher than the national average (according to MERIC), New York did still manage to land a few construction professions in the top 10, like crane operators, roofers, and concrete finishers, even after adjusting the numbers.
For the third year in a row, Seattle, Washington has the most construction cranes in their city’s skyline, a clear sign that the west coast city is still in a major growth period. Around Christmas 2016, the first year Seattle lead the most cranes race, the city put on an awesome lights show and shared an impressive video of the cranes lighting up the skyline, which you can watch here.
If not for having the lowest cost of living in the country, according to the MERIC data, MIssissippi would be in contention for the lowest ranking on our list. However, having a 14.5% lower than the national average boosted the state up 15 spots to #35 after adjustment.
OSHA's new crystalline silica dust exposure regulations officially went into effect on September 23, 2017. Over the past 10 months, there has been plenty of confusion about the lung disease causing material. In the first 6 months after the effective date, OSHA's inspectors yielded 116 violations across the country.
Vermont is one of the few states in the Northeast that doesn't have a ridiculously high cost of living, according to MERIC, at only 2.9% higher than the national average. That helped Vermont rank higher than many others in the Northeast in this list, but it's lower than average adjusted hourly rates for the construction industry still kept it on the bottom half of the list overall.
Since the dawn of green buildings, these projects have always been synonymous with LEED certification. The process of obtaining that LEED certification has not always been an easy one for contractors; there is a ton of paperwork and documentation that needs to take place in order to prove all LEED credits have been rightfully earned. A new construction standard, called BREEAM, is hoping to disrupt the United States’ green building certification world with its impending New Construction Standard Release in 2019.