Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
Tallest Buildings Completed in 2009

Trump International Hotel & Tower Named Tallest Building Completed in 2009; Successful Year for the American High-Rise
Tallest 10 Buildings Completed in 2009

Diagram of 10 tallest buildings completed in 2009 (according to height to architectural top).
Click here to download full project data, including images, on the tallest 10.

Chicago, January 19th, 2010 – The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) today announced the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago as the tallest building completed in 2009. The tower, designed by architects Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP and developed by the Trump Organization is now the 7th tallest building in the world, standing at a height of 423 meters/1389 feet, with 98 stories.

Trump Tower   

“There is much to herald in the new Trump Tower” said Professor Sang Dae Kim, CTBUH Chairman. “It pushes technological boundaries to achieve its great height, making a powerful mark on the Chicago skyline. In doing so, it becomes the tallest building completed in the western hemisphere since the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower was built, also in Chicago, some 35 years ago.”

The year 2009 marked a successful 12 months for the American skyscraper, with three of the five tallest buildings completed during the year being located in the USA—Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago; Bank of America Tower in New York (second tallest at 365m/1198ft) and Aqua in Chicago (fifth tallest at 262m/858ft) —an event that has not occurred since 1990.

Chicago is also home to more tall buildings above 200m completed in 2009 than any other city in the world. Five buildings 200m or taller have opened their doors in Chicago over the past twelve months, whereas no more than three such buildings opened in any other city. Asia however, and in particular China, remains the center of global tall building construction.

Trump Tower, Chicago
Over half of all buildings 200m or taller completed in the past twelve months were located in Asia, with some 36% being in China alone. This will likely remain the case for the foreseeable future, as the Chinese cities of Chongqing, Guangzhou, Nanjing, Shanghai, Shenyang, Shenzhen and Tianjin, amongst others continue to construct some of the tallest buildings in the world.

Despite these successes, tall building construction has not gone unaffected by the global recession as many construction projects around the world are cancelled, delayed or put ‘on-hold’. Compared to 2008, there has been a 28% drop in the total number of buildings 200m or taller completed this year. In 2008, 11 such buildings were completed in the United Arab Emirates, a figure that has fallen to only three in 2009. In addition, there were no buildings from Africa, Australasia, Central America, Europe or South America among the 50 tallest buildings completed in 2009.
Buildings Completed over 200m in height
Tall buildings 200m or Taller completed each year, 1960-2012. Click here to enlarge diagram.
Click here to download more data on the tallest buildings constructed in 2009.
Even with these precarious global economic conditions, the CTBUH reports that 2010 promises to be by far the most active in the history of the skyscraper, as the final touches are completed on some of the tallest buildings around the world. Due to a variety of factors, a significant number of buildings which had been expected to complete in 2009 have been delayed, and will now likely open in 2010. The Burj Dubai (now Burj Khalifa) has already been completed as of January 4th, 2010 at 828 meters (2717 ft), and others anticipated in 2010 include Nanjing Greenland Financial Center (450m/1476ft), The Index (Dubai, 328m/1076ft), Wenzhou Trade Center (322m/1056ft), HHHR Tower (Dubai, 317m/1040ft) and Capitol City Moscow Tower (302m/989ft). Standing at 828 meters/2717 feet in height, the Burj Dubai/Khalifa is 61% taller than the world’s previous tallest building—the 509 meter high Taipei 101 in Taiwan.

It is not just height, but the sheer volume of high-rise buildings set to be completed in 2010 that is astonishing. Data produced by the CTBUH suggests that over 100 buildings 200m or taller will be completed worldwide within the next 12 months (click on the graph below). This is more than the total number of buildings 200m or taller which are already in existence in New York and Hong Kong combined. From 2012, the CTBUH expects to see a drop in the number of tall buildings completed due to the global recession, until the worldwide economy recovers.

“Despite the recent economic downturn, the past decade has proven to be the most active in tall building construction history.” said Philip Oldfield, CTBUH Research Coordinator. “Our data shows that more tall buildings have been completed in the first ten years of the 21st Century, than in the whole of the 20th Century. Prior to the year 2000, 242 buildings 200m or taller had been completed. However, in the past ten years alone some 294 buildings 200m or taller have been added to cities and skylines around the world.”

Click here to download a pdf of this Press Release.

Click here to enlarge graph

  Tallest Ten Buildings Completed in 2009

This study contains a diagram of the tallest ten buildings completed in 2009 and project information such as building height, story number, architect, location, etc.

Click here for a pdf of the CTBUH Tallest Ten Buildings Completed in 2009.

Tall Buildings in Numbers: 2009

This article is focused more broadly than the Tallest Ten study. It contains information on the 50 tallest buildings completed and examines statistics on buildings over 200 meters completed in 2009.

Click here for a pdf of the CTBUH 2009 Tall Building in Numbers