Most major cities around the world have at least one iconic building looming over their skylines. Kunming has long been without such a signature structure, but that is about to change. An article published this week by Yunnan Net reports that exterior work on the tallest building in the province has been completed and the Kunming Iron and Steel Building (昆钢科技大厦) will open for business this summer.
The 219-meter skyscraper is located on Huancheng Xi Lu where Huancheng Nan Lu and Dianchi Lu merge. When it opens in June, the multi-use edifice will have 50 above ground stories comprising nearly 200,000 square meters of floor space. The first five floors will house a Sofitel luxury hotel complete with banquet hall, swimming pool and the near requisite KTV. Above that will be 19 stories of office space, while the highest 25 floors of the building will contain hotel suites.
Ground was broken on the project in 2010 with most of the funding provided by Kunming Iron and Steel Holding Company, one of the 100 largest corporations in China. During construction, the building received the China Steel Award, given annually by representatives from the steel industry to innovative and exceptional structures.
In addition to the award, the Kunming Iron and Steel Building received a triple-A rating from the national government for safety. It was also certified using China's Green Building Evaluation Standard — a lengthy set of guidelines outlining eco-friendly building practices.
Although Kunming is throwing up high-rise buildings at breakneck speed, only a few skyscrapers have been completed. The tower is the tallest structure in the city but that distinction may only last for a few years. There are currently at least ten buildings under construction around Kunming that will be higher than 150 meters.
Of those, six are slated to be taller than the Kunming Iron and Steel Building with the Wanda Plaza and Spring City 66 projects both expected to reach more than 300 meters in height. Two of the most ambitious projects, which have not officially broken ground, are 'supertall' skyscrapers. One, called Dongfeng Plaza, would be located in the heart of the city and stretch 456 meters. The other is a gargantuan tower named Huacheng International Plaza that would soar 558 meters into the Kunming sky.