The Construction of the Skyscraper Burj Khalifa Essay

The Construction of the Skyscraper Burj Khalifa Essay

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Started in 2008, the construction of the skyscraper is expected to complete late this year, with it being open to public in 2015. The Shanghai tower is the second tallest building in the world; second only to the Burj Khalifa in Dubai (at 829.8m). China is no stranger to tall feats of engineering, possessing many of the top 20 tallest buildings in the world. This time round, however, the focus was on the design and sustainability. The big challenge of the current world is sustainability, and so too, was it a challenge for the civil and design engineers on this project. Many key points that the design team wanted to achieve included electricity generation, reducing wind loads, more efficient use of construction material as well as being economically viable to maintain and run. It also had to be an eye pleaser too!
As is with most large scale engineering projects, the team of engineers vary amongst the plethora of engineering disciplines. The team behind the Shanghai Tower featured engineers from all walks of life; from civil to electrical, and even mechanical to theoretical modelling specialists. However, it is unfair to call out one particular engineering discipline on being particularly integral to the project; without a civil engineer, the building may have been poorly developed, but at the same time, without an electrical engineer, the inbuilt wind turbine would have been disappointing. As such, the whole engineering team should be credited for their work in the Shanghai Tower, rather than singling out a particular engineering discipline. For the purpose of this journal, however, I will be focusing on the perspective of the civil engineer.
Sustainability is without a doubt the greatest objective of our time. With global warmin...


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...by collecting rain water fopr example. The Shanghai Tower will be seen as a monument to the possibilities behind sustainable engineering and will act as a beacon for future sustainable engineering projects.
However, it is not only the success that it should be remembered for. The construction of the tower also brought flaws to light about the environmental and social impact of over development. Fast rising real estate costs and the constant sinking of Shanghai’s ground pose real threats in both the environment and economic factors.
All engineering projects will leave a mark on the industry in one way or another, usually from learning of previous mistakes or improving on current methods or techniques. Regardless, the Shanghai Tower will without a doubt help increase the attention to sustainable engineering, BIM use, as well as the implications of over-development.



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