Burj Dubai - The Tallest Building in the World


Burj Dubai is the tallest building that has ever been built. The world’s tallest skyscraper, located in the United Arab Emirates, is 828 metres tall. Construction started in 2004 and, even though the interior is unfinished, the building officially opened in January 2009. According to the constructors, a South Korean firm, the skyscraper cost about $1.5 billion.

Shortly after the opening ceremonies the tower was renamed Burj Khalifa, after the president of the United Arab Emirates, who gave Dubai about $10 billion to pay its debts. Up to the completion of Burj Dubai the Taipeh 101 in Taiwan was the world’s tallest building. It reaches over 500 metres into the sky.


The new tower is Y- shaped and has 160 floors. Built with concrete and embedded steel plates the base gets smaller as the building gets taller. The top of the tower can sway 1.5 metres. Temperatures are about 7°C lower than at the base.

The new skyscraper will have over a thousand luxury apartments, 50 floors of offices and a luxurious Armani hotel. About 30,000 people will be working and living in the skyscraper once the interior is finished. The world’s highest observation deck is located in the 124 th floor. 54 elevators will get you to the top at speeds of up to 60 km an hour in about two minutes.

Burj Dubai -  Donaldytong - commons:File:Burj Khalifa.jpg



Construction experts say that building the tower has been the greatest engineering achievement ever accomplished. However, there are also negative sides. The skyscraper was built by thousands of workers from Southern Asia who earned very little. Some reports say that they had to work up to 14 hours a day, stayed in miserable houses and weren’t allowed to leave the site. Many were injured and a few even died.

Burj Dubai is the centre of a gigantic new development area with about 30,000 new homes, 9 hotels , 6 acres of parkland, a 12 ha man-made lake and the largest mall in the world.

For Dubai the skyscraper is a symbol of strength and prosperity, even though the emirate is living beyond its means and spending too much money.

Although most of the luxurious space has already been sold Dubai will have problems selling all the apartments in the tower because there are many empty luxury flats and houses in the city already. Even rich people are careful when it comes to buying real estate during an economic recession.


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  • accomplish = finish, get done
  • according to = as shown or said by
  • achievement = something important that you have done
  • acre = about 4 000 square metres of land
  • base = the bottom
  • beyond its means = here: to spend more money than you have
  • ceremony = an official or important event
  • completion = finish
  • concrete = building material made out of cement, water and sand
  • construction = building
  • debt = the money that you have borrowed from someone and have to give back
  • development area = place where new objects are built
  • earn = money you get when you work
  • embedded = implanted, put into
  • engineering = building
  • even though = while
  • gigantic = very big
  • however = but
  • interior = the inner part of the building
  • located = the place where something is
  • luxurious = very expensive and beautiful
  • mall = shopping centre
  • man-made = made by people
  • miserable = very bad
  • observation deck = floor that has windows around it and where you have a beautiful view
  • once = as soon as
  • prosperity = wealth, being rich
  • reach = get to
  • real estate = land, apartments or houses that you sell or buy
  • recession = difficult time when there is not much trade and the economy is bad
  • renamed = to give another name
  • shape = form
  • site = area where the building is built
  • skyscraper = a very tall modern building
  • speed = how fast something is
  • steel = strong metal made out of iron
  • strength = power
  • sway = swing
  • United Arab Emirates = group of small emirates in the Persian Gulf region