MangoVine
Adventures in East Asia

The Record-Breaking Taipei 101 Building

As the world's tallest building, the Taipei 101 building was an attraction we couldn't ignore. Situated in Taipei East and built in 2004, the Taipei 101, officially known as the Taipei Financial Centre, has 101 floors above ground and breaks a few other world records as well as incorporating engineering features that reflect it's modernity.

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Taipei 101 holds the record for the tallest roof and the tallest occupied floor ( a no-brainer if it's overall height beats the rest of the world), though it does also boast the world's fastest elevator moving at 1,010 metres per minute and taking only 37 seconds to reach the observatories at the top.

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The way the building looks is one of my favourite features, with its "segments" collectively representing a giant bamboo stalk to symbolise the "unbreakable, strength-in-pliability of Taiwan's people".

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With its height (and Taiwan's vulnerability to earthquakes), the Taipei 101 also has the world's biggest passive wind damper, which is also publicly visible in the centre of the building from the observation decks near the top.

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It has a diameter of 5.5 metres, weighs 660 metric tons, and being supported by 8 high strength steel cables (9cm in diameter) the damper can reduce the building's movements by up to 40%.

Enough stats. The Taipei 101 building is basically earthquake, wind and fire proof and uses a damper character as its mascot. What more do you need?

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Well, we appreciated a dedicated shuttle bus from the nearest MRT station Taipei City Hall, although we did wait a good fifteen minutes for it. The bus dropped passengers off at the side of the Taipei 101 Mall, the 5th floor of which contains the escalators for the observation decks at the top of Taipei 101.

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Once up at the top, we also enjoyed views from the indoor observatory on the 89th floor. This space was also equipped with a drinks bar and souvenir shops as well as a number of displays of vintage Taiwanese objects.

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The 91st floor was also accessible to visitors and this was the outdoor observatory offering the full height experience including passing clouds and wind. We only felt a little wind, though at that height, it was still surprisingly warm.

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Linh and I had timed our visit to the Taipei 101 building towards the end of the day to reach the top around 6pm, and this proved to be an excellent move. We were able to see the best sunlit views of any cityscape I've ever witnessed, complete with massive shadows over the river and lush, green, rolling hills.

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The sun set whilst we moved up to the outdoor observatory and we caught the night lights of Taipei before we left.

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You can get an idea of these scenes in the video below:



To return back to ground level, we passed through the world's highest jewellery arts boutique, the elaborately named "Treasure Sky", to reach the 88th floor elevator. The store was selling quite elaborate stock actually, featuring wallet burners such as this large and highly detailed sculpture of an eagle with outstretched wings.

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Back down at the Taipei 101 Mall, we passed through the five levels of retail outlets to get to the basement food court - one of the larger and finer ones we visited in Taipei.

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Here, we tried some oyster omelette (a bit too gooey for our taste!) and some Shanghai dumplings.

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More photos of the Taipei 101 Building on Flickr


This entry posted in : Attractions. Taiwan. Tourism.

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