8 Dizzying Facts About Petronas Towers You Probably Did Not Know02 February 2017 |
A signature landmark of Kuala Lumpur, the Petronas Towers are a twin set of skyscrapers synonymous with the nation of Malaysia. The Suria KLCC shopping malls situated at the foot of the towers remains one of the most popular shopping destinations in Malaysia.
1. The 7th Tallest Building In The World Today
When it was built in 1998, the 88-storey Petronas Towers held the top record for the tallest building in the world at a staggering height of 1,483 feet! Although the record was eventually overtaken in 2006 by Taipei 101 at 1,671 feet, it is still worthy to note that the record was held as two entire structures, while most other records stood as one. As such, the Petronas Towers still stands today as the tallest twin towers in the world.
2. Built With 590,000 Square Feet Of Laminated Glass
The Petronas Towers reportedly took a total of 6 years and USD 1.6 billion to construct. The structure consists of 899,000 sq ft of stainless steel extrusions. Since this would naturally attract a lot of heat, 590,000 square feet of laminated glass was installed in order to reflect the harmful UV rays and reduce the heat. Cleaning every single glass panel – the equivalent of 10 football fields – would take almost two months!
3. The Architecture Is Inspired By Malaysian And Islamic Culture
Then-Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir pushed for the design of the twin skyscrapers to not only set a record for the tallest building, but also to resonate a Malaysian identity. Therefore, the shape of its design was designed to be based on the five pillars of the Islamic religion. When viewed from the top of this towering structure, the cross-section of the towers reflects the eight-pointed star symbol of Islamic culture!
4. The Petronas Towers Can Withstand A Hurricane
In order to meet safety construction regulations, the towers had to be able to withstand winds up to a speed of 65 miles per hour – about one-third the wind speed of Hurricane Katrina! The engineers who worked on the project went to extraordinary lengths to test the towers by using a wind tunnel, first by a computer simulation and then by building an actual model of the towers.
5. Someone Has Climbed The Petronas Towers
Famous French climber Alain Robert, nicknamed “The Human Spider” for climbing tall buildings without the use of any equipment, attempted scaling the Petronas Towers twice unsuccessfully in 1997 and 2007. He finally succeeded on his third try in 2009 when he successfully climbed right up to the top of the mast, standing up with his arms widespread – imagine that! Robert was arrested on all three attempts by Malaysian authorities at the end of his climb.
6. Entry To The Petronas Towers Is Fiercely Limited
Free timed tickets are handed out daily although on a very limited basis. The queue starts early in the morning and eager patrons can expect to start queueing as early as 630am for a chance of acquiring a ticket. Guests however, also have an added option to purchase a ticket in advance.
7. The Enormous Skybridge That Connects The Towers
It may look tiny next to the two epic towers from afar within your hotel, but the skybridge that guests can access on the 41st and 42nd level is 192 feet long and weighs a total of 750 tons, acting as a walkway between both towers. The bridge is designed to slide in and out of both towers, acting as a safety device for patrons to cross over in the event of an emergency in one tower.
8. The Masts Of The Towers Defines Petronas Towers
Each one was outsourced to construction companies in Japan and Korea, taking a total of 5 months to build. The mast above each tower alone is 241 feet long and weighed 176 tons, comprising of the spire, mast ball and ring ball. While the pinnacles may act as an aesthetic feature, the masts also have functioning aircraft warning lights. Interestingly, the mast was what allowed Petronas Towers to clinch the tallest building record back when it was built, beating out Chicago’s Willis Tower.
It may no longer be the tallest, but the Petronas Towers today still remains a hot spot for tourists who travel to Malaysia; hosting a wide range of entertainment, hotels and a great nightlife in the vicinity of this extraordinary landmark.