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Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur

Petronas Towers / Menara Petronas

The towers, which were designed by Argentine architect C├ęsar Pelli were completed in 1998. The 88-floor towers constructed of largely reinforced concrete with a steel and glass facade were designed to resemble motifs found in Islamic art, a reflection of Malaysia's Muslim heritage.

They were built on the site of Kuala Lumpur's race track.

Because of the depth of the bedrock the buildings were built on the world's deepest foundation going down some 120 meters and requiring massive amounts of concrete.

In an unusual move, a different construction company was hired for each of the towers, and they were made to compete against each other. Eventually the builders of Tower 2, Samsung Constructions, won the race, despite starting a month behind Tower 1, built by Hazama Corporation, although Tower 2 ran into problems when they discovered the structure was 25 millimeters off from vertical. Due to a lack of steel and the huge cost of importing steel, the towers were constructed on a cheaper radical design of super high strength reinforced concrete.

High-strength concrete is a material familiar to Asian contractors and twice as effective as steel in sway reduction. Supported by 23-by-23-metre concrete cores and an outer ring of widely-spaced super columns, the towers showcase a sophisticated structural system that accommodates its slender profile and provides from 1300 to 2000 square metres of column-free office space per floor.

Information source : http://www.klcc.com.my/

Below the twin towers is Suria KLCC, a popular shopping mall, and Dewan Filharmonik Petronas, the home of the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.