2 aug 11  | Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago firm designing new tallest building

The Chicago-based firm of Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture is designing what is to be the world’s tallest building, Kingdom Tower, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, near the Red Sea.

The proposed Kingdom Tower will be more than 3,280 feet high and have a total construction area of 5.7 million square feet, according to a release from the architecture and design firm. By comparison, the Willis Tower is 1,451 feet high and the John Hancock Center is 1,128 feet high. The tower’s height will be at least 568 feet taller than the world’s current tallest building, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which was designed by Adrian Smith while he was at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP.

Kingdom Tower will be the centerpiece and first construction phase of the Kingdom City development on a site in north Jeddah, the architecture firm. Kingdom Tower will feature a Four Seasons hotel, Four Seasons serviced apartments, offices, luxury condominiums and the world’s highest observatory.

Design development of the tower is under way, according to the release. Foundation drawings are complete and the piling for the tower is currently being tendered. Kingdom Tower will cost approximately $1.2 billion to construct, while the cost of the entire Kingdom City project is anticipated to be $20 billion, according to the firm.