With urban space to development prime real estate becoming a premium in highly-populated wealth centres across Europe, the most efficient use of space is upwards, with many huge skyscraper projects being recently completed and underway as we speak.
Moscow is becoming a hotbed for tall buildings, with two new structures set to become the tallest on the continent ahead of the Russian capital’s Mercury City Tower which currently holds top spot.
Here is a rundown of the tallest buildings in Europe which have been completed.
#10 Torre Bankia– Madrid, Spain (250 metres)
Located in the Cuatro Torres Business Area in Madrid with 45 floors, the Torre Bankia is the tallest of the four buildings in the Cuatro Torres Business Area complex, surpassing Torre de Cristal by less than a metre. It is the tallest building in Spain and was originally built to be the home of energy giant Repsol until the company decided on another location.
#9 Messeturm – Frankfurt, Germany (256.6 metres)
The second-tallest building in Germany comprises 63 floors and was opened in 1990. Such is its size it has its own postal code, and its design is numerous geometric shapes which is completed by a pyramid at the summit. The use of space is remarkable, for the ground floor of this office block is only 1,681 square metres.
#8 Commerzbank Tower – Frankfurt, Germany (258.7 metres)
Just surpassing its fellow Frankfurt skyscrape, the Commerzbank Tower has seven fewer storeys but stands two metres taller. The building provides 121,000 m2 (1,300,000 sq ft) of office space for the Commerzbank headquarters, including winter gardens and natural lighting and air circulation. The antenna takes the height of the building to 300.1 metres.
#7 Istanbul Sapphire – Istanbul, Turkey (261 metres)
Located in the Levant business district, the Istanbul Sapphire has 54 floors and was opened in March 2011. It is a residential and retail project, and has special glass shells which take the outside air naturally via holes on every third floor. This system helps to negate bad weather and noise pollution.
#6 Triumph Palace – Moscow, Russia (264.1 metres)
The tallest purpose apartment building in Europe, with 1,000 luxury residences. It is sometimes referred to as the Eighth Sister as its design is similar to the Seven Sisters skyscraper built in Moscow by Joseph Stalin in the 1950s. The 57-storey building was opened in 2006.
#5 Naberezhnaya Tower – Moscow, Russia (268.4 metres)
Translated as the ‘tower on the embankment’, this office complex is made up of three separate buildings connected by a basement. Block C is what gets this into the Top 10, with the site located in the International Business Centre in Moscow, in plot 10, and has office and retail space to let.
#4 City of Capitals – Moscow, Russia (301.6 metres)
The City of Capitals opened in 2009 and houses twin skyscrapers, the tallest of which is the Moscow Tower which sits next to the slightly shorter St Petersburg Tower. The top floors are mostly occupied by an entertainment complex and office suites and luxury apartments. The base floors comprise a fitness centre, shops, restaurants and conference facilities.
#3 Eurasia Tower – Moscow, Russia (308.9 metres)
One of the highlights to this recently-completed structure is the elevator to be found on the outside, offering visitors stunning views of the entire city. A combination of classical and modern designs, the Eurasia Tower will comprise of offices, apartments, a hotel and other entertainment facilities. More than 1,000 cars will be able to park on the bottom.
#2 The Shard – London, UK (309.6 metres)
Sat above London Bridge train station, The Shard was opened to the public in 2013 and has 72 habitable floors. The building has 44 elevators and was designed by Italian Renzo Piano, replacing the Southwark Towers office block from 1975. The Shangri-La Hotel takes up floors 34-52, while Al Jazeera occupies offices on floor 16. The contract cost of the project came in at £435 million.
#1 Mercury City Tower – Moscow, Russia (338.8 metres)
In November 2012 the Mercury City Tower surpassed the height of The Shard and has 75 floors with a further five below ground. It is a mixture of residential and commercial space.
A remarkable feature of this building is its covering in copper-coloured cladding – a design feature which covers more than half of the structure.
Rasen Construction finished the building last year, which is located in the Moscow International Business Centre alongside the Naberezhnaya Tower. It will shortly be surpassed by two other towers in the city, which are set for completion and opening imminently.