April 17, 2010

Taipei 101 Skyscraper

Visiting Taipei, you definitely don’t want to miss the tallest building in Taiwan which was also the world tallest skyscraper from 2004 to January 4th, 2010, when the opening of Burj Khalifa in Dubai took place. Taipei 101 has served as an icon of modern Taiwan. It consists of 101 floors above the ground and 5 floors underground. Taipei 101 is also known as “Taipei World Financial Center” and a multi-level shopping mall with hundreds of fashionable stores, restaurants and clubs.

The ticket booth and lift entrance are located on the 5th floor of the building. We purchased the tickets priced at NT 400 (around US $11) per person to ride on the world’s fastest elevator to the 89th floor, the Indoor Observatory. Visitors were greeted friendly by the staff. Compliance to the rules was also firmly. I saw a visitor who was asked to throw away the chewing gum before he was able to line up for the elevator. Lockers are also provided to the guests who have the larger carry-on.

This is the world’s fastest, high-speed pressurized elevator, reaching speeds of 1,010 meters per minutes. It only takes 37 seconds to go from the 5th floor to the 89th floor. No dizziness feeling at all. You can also watch the animated sky scene on the roof of the elevator while you are being lifted.

On the 88th and 89th floor, the world’s largest and heaviest wind damper can be observed with a closer view. This damper is designed to keep the building not to swing too much from the strong wind or earthquake. The building would only be swamp 150 cm the most if those situations occur! Here is the Damper’s fact sheet- “World’s biggest passive wind damper, with a diameter of 5.5 meters and weighing 660 metric tons. The damper was made of 41 layers of 12.5 cm thick solid steel plate, at a cost of more than NT 132 million.”

The damper is suspended from 92th floor to 88th floor. (Illustration is done by Someformofhuman) The damper indeed is a giant round figure when compared with a human size; however, it looks so tiny if you looked through the skyscraper!

The Indoor Observatory on the 89th floor offers visitors a commanding view of the city and Taipei Basin in all directions. Taipei is surrounded by the rivers and mountains. Choose a clear sky day to go up here; you would be surprised by what you can see!

Taipei is the capital of Taiwan and is also a home to an estimated 2,619,920 people (March, 2009).

The world’s highest jewelry arts boutique is located on the 88th floor-“Treasure Sky”. Lots of precious coral gemstone arts and jewelry are displayed and sold on this floor. Strolling and enjoying the art gallery, I totally forgot that I was on the floor of 438 meters in height. It is also very interesting to see the world’s tallest building’s mailboxes (2004) which are located on the 89th floor! Don’t forget to send your friend a postcard through this world tallest building’s mailbox!

To go up to the 91th floor of the Outdoor Observatory, take the stairs from the 89th floor. It offers the expansive outside view and close view of the spire at the top of the building. Be careful of the strong wind and the sharp metal sound created by the wind hitting the metal fences. This Outdoor Observatory only opens if weather permits.

Although Taipei 101 is now the second tallest skyscraper in the world, it had so many world record figures inside this building. It is the symbol where the earth and the sky meet in Taiwan. Through launching of fireworks, it takes people in Taiwan to the bright and shinning new years.

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Zhu said...

The view is amazing!

I have a love/ hate relationship with heights. I don't like them yet as a photographer I'm often looking for the best spot and this is clearly one!

In Ottawa, we have the Peace Tower but it's not that tall. I guess the CN Tower in Toronto is the tallest building I've been too. Quite scary too because the floor at the very top is a glass floor and even though you know it's safe, stepping on it is really scary at first.

Rafael Lam said...

I only have been Taipei 101 once at night,
it's very impressive, I think this is the most beautiful high building in the world.
Your description let me know more about it!

Protocol Snow said...

Wow, I did not know Taipei 101 had an open-air observatory. I totally missed it =X

Anonymous said...

There are so many tall buildings in Taipei!
We don't have many tall buildings in London...
It's so not like a financial hub in Europe at all.
Having said that, it's still very rich in cultural stuff.

The views from Taipei 101 must be splendid at night!
Do they open at night?

micki and kristen said...

@Zhu-The glass floor on the top floor of CN Tower in Toronto was quite scary for me. I was there, forced myself to stand on the glass floor for a picture taken! Oh, boy, as long as I was not looking down, I was okay for a short period of time~~^^

@Rafael- You must have taken some gorgeous night images up there!

@Protocol Snow- Don’t forget to go up to the 91th floors when you visit Taipei next time~~ I was only out there for not more than 5 minutes, because of the strong wind! However, it did give me the feeling of when the earth and sky meet~~

@Londoncaller-Taipei 101 opens till 10:00 PM. The last ticketing and entry is at 9:15 PM. I have not got up there at night, and would like to do that soon!

JUNE said...

I love the building and had an amazing time when i visited there. :)

micki and kristen said...

@June- Thanks :) Glad to know you had a great time in Taiwan!

Anonymous said...

Re: Forgotten chapel in the meadow / 草原上被遗忘的小教堂 / Gereja kecil yang dilupakan di padang rumput / 草地の忘られたチャペル

Oh yes, I am sure you'll like that place since you like ruins so much! :-)
That castle is also very quiet, despite it's just 15 mins drive from Bath.

Cecil Lee said...

Thanks for sharing these images and facts of Taipei 101 skyscraper. I haven't been there myself but your images of Taipei city from the top of 101 tower just made me want to be there tomorrow! :)

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

It's interesting how architects and engineers have created such a tall structure in Taipeh meant to withstand earthquakes and typhoons. I got so curious with that damper thing!

micki and kristen said...

@Cecil- Thanks for your compliment! :)

@Nomadic- I was concerning that the world tallest building was built in the earthquake and typhoon frequent area. After I have seen the world largest damper and its structure, it released my concern~~

shloke said...

Amazing and stunning works of architecture! Kudos to 71 years old C. Y. Lee [李祖原] who directed the design of Taipei 101.

Thanks for sharing this interesting post!!! I've learned some interesting facts about Taipei 101:

a) 5 underground floors
b) World's fastest pressurized elevator +
c) World’s largest and heaviest wind damper

Alex Loke

micki and kristen said...

@Alex- Thanks for summarizing the facts and reading the details! :):)

lechua said...

interesting futuristic architectural look to the building... reminds me somewhat of a rocket.

kristen and micki said...

@Lechua- Now I look at it again on the illustration, it does have a rocket look!

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