Dezeen’s top 10 skyscrapers of 2017

By Jessica Mairs

Architecture editor Jessica Mairs continues our review of 2017 with 10 skyscrapers that made their mark this year, from the unapologetically tall to the peculiarly shaped.


Chaoyang Park Plaza, China, by MAD

Completing just in time for the end of the year, MAD only revealed final photographs of its Chaoyang Park Plaza yesterday – but the mound-shaped towers has been attracting photographers for several months.

Rising in parts to 120 metres, the complex of 10 buildings is set on the southern edge of one of Beijing’s largest parks. It is based on Chinese ink paintings of mountain ranges and rock formations.

about Chaoyang Park Plaza ›


Marina One, Singapore, by Ingenhoven Architects, A61 and Gustafson Porter + Bowman

Wooden walkways are arranged in sinuous layers around the atrium of this skyscraper, echoing the formation of terraced paddy fields.

Abundant planting spills from the edges of the walkways, forming an oasis at the centre of the 223-metre development, which joins Moshe Safdie’s icon Marina Bay Sands towers and a topical park called Gardens by the Bay on the edge of Sinagpore’s Marina Bay.

about Marina One ›


Poly International Plaza, China, by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

The latticed exoskeleton of the 161-metre Poly International Plaza tower is based on the folds used to create paper lanterns.

Faceted glazing is set into the gaps in the framework, which can be admired through a 90-metre atrium at the heart of the office building in Beijing.

about Poly International Plaza ›


Kohn Pedersen Fox tower South Korea

Lotte World Tower, South Korea, by Kohn Pederson Fox

The 555-metre Lotte World Tower in Seoul is the loftiest on this year’s list. The skyscraper tapers towards its summit, where a glass-bottomed observation deck provides an unrivalled view of the city for those with a strong constitution.

The building – well within the supertall category reserved for skyscrapers above 300 metres– is currently the fifth tallest in the world.

about Lotte World Tower ›


American Copper Building by SHoP Architects

American Copper Buildings, US, by SHoP Architects

The crooked silhouettes of these two residential skyscrapers by SHoP Architects are linked by a 91-metre-high skybridge containing luxury leisure facilities.

Copper-cladding covers two faces of each of the towers, while stripes of glazing down their sides frame views out across Manhattan’s East River from heights of up to 164 metres.

about American Copper Buildings ›


Rothschild Tower, Israel, by Richard Meier

White louvres cover the facades of the 154-metre-high Rothschild Tower, giving it a typical Meier – and Tel Aviv – colouring.

Its location in Israel’s White City affords residents views of some of the 4,000 Bauhaus-style buildings that surround it, and beyond to the Mediterranean Sea.

about the Rothschild Tower ›


150 North Riverside Office Tower by Goettsch Partners

150 North Riverside, US, by Goettsch Partners

This rectilinear block by Goettsch Partners meets the ground in a dramatic taper, wedging itself between a railway line to the west and the Chicago River to the east.

At 220 metres, 150 North Riverside is by no means the tallest building in Chicago, but its 20:1 height-to-base ratio garnered plenty of attention from readers.

about 150 North Riverside ›


Beirut Terraces by Herzog & de Meuron

Beirut Terraces, Lebanon, by Herzog & de Meuron

Staggered floor plates provide shaded terraces at each level of Herzog & de Meuron’s 119-metre-tall Beirut Terraces building.

Pot plants positioned sporadically around the edges of the balconies provide splashes of colour to its otherwise white slabs, which sandwich layers of glazing that give residents panoramic views over Beirut.

about Beirut Terraces ›


Bund Finance Centre, China, Foster + Partners and Heatherwick Studio

This pair of 180-metre towers completing in October form the final piece to the Bund Finance Centre, a mixed-use development in Shanghai by Foster + Partners and Heatherwick Studio.

Strips of textured granite used to frame the glazed blocks provide a visual link with the surrounding lower rise development, which features an ornate arts centre veiled in a kinetic curtain of bronze tubes.

about the Bund Finance Centre ›


Tribunal de Paris Renzo Piano

Tribunal de Paris, France, by Renzo Piano Building Workshop

Last month, Renzo Piano’s firm completed Europe’s largest law courts, in Paris. At 160 metres tall, it is also one of city’s tallest buildings to complete since a recently lifted skyscraper ban.

But the scale of stacked-block formation, which forms large planted terraces, reawakened old yearnings for a return to the city’s skyscraper height restrictions.

about Tribunal de Paris ›

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