Taipei 101 ( 台北101 / 臺北101), formerly known as the Taipei World Financial Center, is a landmark skyscraper located in Xinyi District, Taipei, Taiwan. The building ranked officially as the world's tallest from 2004 until the opening of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai in 2010. Taipei 101, designed by C.Y. Lee & partners and constructed primarily KTRT Joint Venture. The tower has served as an icon of modern Taiwan ever since its opening, and received the 2004 Emporis Skyscraper Award. Fireworks launched from Taipei 101 feature prominently in international New Year's Eve broadcasts and the structure appears frequently in travel literature and international media.
Taipei 101 comprises 101 floors above ground and 5 floors underground. The building was architecturally created as a symbol of the evolution of technology and Asian tradition (see Symbolism). Its postmodernist approach to style incorporates traditional design elements and gives them modern treatments. The tower is designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes. A multi-level shopping mall adjoining the tower houses hundreds of fashionable stores, restaurants and clubs.
The Taipei 101 tower comprises 101 stories above ground and five underground. Upon its completion Taipei 101 claimed the official records for:
Ground to highest architectural structure (spire): 509.2 metres (1,671 ft). Previously held by the Petronas Towers 452 m (1,483 ft).
Ground to roof: 449.2 m (1,474 ft). Formerly held by the Willis Tower 442 m (1,450 ft).
Ground to highest occupied floor: 439.2 m (1,441 ft). Formerly held by the Willis Tower 412.4 m (1,353 ft).
Fastest ascending elevator speed: designed to be 1010 meters per minute, which is 16.83 m/s (55.22 ft/s) (60.6 km/h, 37.7 mi/h). Now it has been succeeded by Burj Khalifa's elevator whose speed of ascending is 18 m/s (64 km/h).
Largest countdown clock: Displayed on New Year's Eve.
Tallest sundial. (See 'Symbolism' below.)
Taipei 101 was the first building in the world to break the half-kilometer mark in height and the first record-setting skyscraper constructed in the new millennium - 3rd millennium.