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The Burj Dubai, the world's tallest skyscraper, opened to the public Monday.  (Source: Wall Street Journal)

The opening was capped by an impressive nightime lightshow, complete with 10,000 fireworks.  (Source: BurjDubaiSkyscraper.com)
New tallest building easily surpasses the previous giant's 500+ meter mark

The Burj Khalifa ("Khalifa Tower" in Arabic), formerly known as Burj Dubai, is a marvel of modern engineering and architecture.  Under construction since September 2004, the massive tower was finally completed this year and on Monday opened to the public for the first time, allowing it to officially claim the title of the world's largest supertall building.  The world is now free to marvel at the tower which is located in Dubai.

Standing at approximately half a mile high, the tower's 828 meter estimated height easily outdoes the previous record holder -- the 509 meter Taipei 101, located in Taiwan.  The new record holder's principal builder was the South Korean Samsung C&T, who also built the Taipei 101 and the Petronas Twin Towers.

The tower features nearly 3.6 million square feet and cost the Dubai sheikdom an estimated $20B USD.  The building project was masterminded by Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the city-state's 60-year-old hereditary leader.

Saud Masud, head of research at UBS AG in Dubai said the tower was designed to help Dubai "stay in the limelight as home to a global landmark."

Hopes are high amid trouble in the region.  Worldwide, the sheikdom has garnered criticism for its profiteering on high oil prices in the 90s and current decade.  At the same time it suffered substantial loss of wealth during the recent recession with November bringing the announcement that one of nation's largest government-owned conglomerates could not repay its debts, news that sent shockwaves through the global investing economy.

Despite over $80B USD in debt and the expectation that Dubai real estate prices could drop 30 percent in 2010, after falling 50 percent in 2009, the sheikdom is looking to spare no expense at the tightly secured grand opening ceremony today.  The opening ceremony is said to involve 10,000 fireworks.

While Dubai has suffered financially, its southern neighbor Abu Dhabi has thrived, wisely reinvesting oil profits and largely weathering the recession.  Sheik Mohammed turned to Abu Dhabi for financial assistance.  The fellow emirate lent Sheik Mohammed an undisclosed amount, helping to reduce his emirate's debt burden and continue with ambitious construction projects like the Burj Khalifa.

Dubai now turns its attention to the upcoming Nakheel Towers, a new skyscraper, currently under construction, which aims to reach 1 kilometer high.  A similar kilometer-high tower, the Burj Mubarak is being built in Kuwait.



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Purely a visceral vent.
By bupkus on 1/5/2010 3:42:49 PM , Rating: 2
I look at the picture of this building and see Arabia boasting its accomplishments and global stature.
This same article (as posted at http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8439618.stm... Search for "World's Tallest Building" if link doesn't work) shows a graph comparing the 5 tallest buildings with the World Trade Towers conspicuously missing.
With my guts turning I feel the jealousy the Arabs have for the success of the West and their own shame. I feel a comparison to the story of Cain and Abel.
Perhaps they wish to be proven God's righteous and what better way than to attack the West and have their successes as proof of God's approval and their stature in the world.
Will Al-Qaeda attack this building? I seriously doubt it. This would be like saying that other Arabs are the same as the Great Devil and it would not increase Al-Qaeda's stature in the Arab world like attacking the most powerful nation in the world.

I'm wondering if I should even post this or just hit Cancel. But as I said, this is a visceral response and not an intellectual argument.




RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By rmclean816 on 1/5/2010 3:47:13 PM , Rating: 2
viscerally on crack!


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By bupkus on 1/5/2010 4:49:25 PM , Rating: 3
I'm sorry, did I kill your Avatar buzz?


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By rmclean816 on 1/5/2010 11:14:45 PM , Rating: 2
what is that even supposed to mean?


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By bupkus on 1/6/2010 2:08:14 AM , Rating: 2
I'm suggesting a preoccupation with the mundane. A distraction from awareness of the deep seated evil targeting us Americans for a dazzling display of 3D special effects served up in a huge helping of Hollywood escapism.
Try renting the film "Islam: What the West Needs to Know" then tell me I'm on crack.
In addition, you asked rmclean816 just a few comments down if he was on crack. What is with all these "crack" comments? Really, dude, what is that even supposed to mean?


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By bupkus on 1/6/2010 2:12:56 AM , Rating: 2
Correction: Reclaimer77, not you. Correction follows.

I'm suggesting a preoccupation with the mundane. A distraction from awareness of the deep seated evil targeting us Americans for a dazzling display of 3D special effects served up in a huge helping of Hollywood escapism.
Try renting the film "Islam: What the West Needs to Know" then tell me I'm on crack.
In addition, you asked Reclaimer77 just a few comments down if he was on crack. What is with all these "crack" comments? Really, dude, what is that even supposed to mean?


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By rmclean816 on 1/8/2010 5:25:06 PM , Rating: 2
don't think too hard on it. You might blow a brain cell.


RE: Purely a visceral vent.
By TerranMagistrate on 1/5/2010 5:01:54 PM , Rating: 3
Good post. And you can be sure that those Arabs (of the muslim variety anyway) were overjoyed at the sight of the World Trade Center towers falling.

And I can say for certain that Dubai will sink back into obscurity just as fast as it rose up, if not faster.


By Seemonkeyscanfly on 1/5/2010 6:41:33 PM , Rating: 2
Not that I'd ever really want to do any harm, but your post started me thinking... If we all got together a purchase as many black cat bricks of firecrackers and tied them together so they all go off at the same time. How many firecrackers would it take to move the build... let alone cause one to fall?
OK, I realize getting them all to blow at once would be impossible.. but if that could be done, what 30 semi truck loads??? an wow what a bang that would make.... I saw mythbusters blow a heavy duty cement truck back to god, and that was a sight to see... I can only imagine how much bigger this would be...

Well long life to the build and thankfully I'm not a window washer.


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