The world's tallest building is a constantly changing statistic as people try and outdo each other. As of September 2, 2008, the Burj Dubai tower in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, had reached 688 meters (2,257 feet) and was still under construction. This surpassed both the previous "tallest building," Taiwan's Taipei 101 tower as the world's tallest building when it reached 512 meters (1,533 feet) and the previous "tallest man-made structure" when it passed the 629-meter (2,063-foot) KVLY-TV mast in North Dakota, USA.

Interestingly enough, what gets the "World's Tallest Building" title can depend on how you figure the height. When I created this writeup in 2000, there were several possibilities:

  1. Height to structural or architectural top: Petronas Towers. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia at 1483 ft / 452 m
  2. Height to highest occupied floor: Sears Tower, Chicago, Illinois, USA at 1431 ft / 436 m
  3. Height to top of roof: Sears Tower - 1450 ft / 442 m
  4. Height to tip of spire or antenna: Sears Tower, at 1,730 ft, since early 2000. Before that it was the World Trade Center twin towers, until the Sears Tower added a taller antenna.
  5. CN Tower in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, at 553.33m (1,815 ft., 5 inches) was "the world's tallest free-standing structure" until the Burj Dubai, because unlike the TV mast mentioned above, it wasn't supported by cables.

Sources: http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080902/wl_mideast_afp/uaeconstructiondubai;_ylt=AunbH_ns7SH_WJkH4.3FHJG9IxIF
http://www.worldstallest.com (before its being taken down by its webmaster in September 2001)
Cecil Adams' The Straight Dope column at http://www.straightdope.com/columns/000721.html

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