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Kuala Lumpur: Petronas Twin Towers
At a staggering 452 meters in height the Petronas Towers dominate the skyline in Kuala Lumpur. The Petronas Towers are the worlds “tallest freestanding” towers in the world housing an assortment of office buildings, a contemporary concert hall and the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra in the Petronas Malaysia Philharmonic Hall. The geometric impressions on both towers are often found in Islamic architecture. Two overlaid and rotated squares each encompass small, rounded in fillings adorned on the Petronas Towers. Many architects describe this special pattern as symbolizing stability, unity, harmony and rationale which are all important Islamic principles. Special highlights of the Petronas Towers include high-speed double deck elevators and an exciting double deck Sky Bridge.
The Petronas Twin Towers, designed by Argentine architect César Pelli, are far more impressive in the real life than in any photos or film, they command Kuala Lumpur’s landscape utterly, walk in amongst the citys many tall and eye-catching buildings and around every corner its towers will thrust out, dazzling and captivating, everything else is just packaging. The complex steel-and-glass facade that sheathes the towers from level 6 upwards creates huge impact either by day or at night. In the sunlight the vast structures glitter, the whole building shimmering in silver, and its just the same effect at night albeit even more impressive as it is washed with thousands of floodlights.
The story of the Twin Towers starts in 1991 the Petronas company gave the green light to the plan for a dramatic skyscraper in the city centre and the construction planning began in January 1992. By March 1993, the excavators were hard at work, digging down 30 metres below the surface of the site, according to the official websites history section. 1,200,000 square metres of earth was excavated and de-watered in a year, while over 2.5 km of access roads sprang up and 4km of temporary drainage was laid. The extent of excavation required to lay the foundations, that would support what would be the worlds tallest building, required a mammoth effort to move over 500 truck-loads of earth every single night. The next stage was the single largest and longest concrete pour in Malaysian history as over 13,200 cubic metres of concrete was continuously poured through a period of 54 hours for each tower.