Skyscraper of the Day: Meet The Two IFC Tower

The International Finance Centre, abbreviated as IFC, is a skyscraper and an integrated commercial development on the waterfront of Hong Kong’s Central District. The IFC complex consists of One IFC, Two IFC, IFC Mall and Four Seasons Hotel. Designed by world renowned architect Cesar Pelli, Two IFC is a 88 storeys, 415-metre-tall building above the Central waterfront. It had been the world’s third tallest building when completed in 2003 and is currently the second tallest in Hong Kong.

The International Finance Centre occupies one of the most beautiful urban sites in the world, adjacent to the narrowest crossing of Victoria Harbour, with the Central District and Victoria Peak as a backdrop. The entire form is visible as it stands apart from the cluster of other skyscrapers. The building has a clear and memorable presence, a great obelisk at the scale of the city. With its carefully proportioned setbacks, its centric form tapers as it rises, expressing a vertical ascending movement. The surface articulation of the curtain wall reinforces the verticality of the design. In plan, the walls are convex and the central section is stepped forward, giving the tower a rounded, beveled appearance. The vertical window mullions are shaped like airfoils, tracing sharp lines from base to crown. The tower is clad in lightly reflective vision glass and fritted spandrel glass that softens the tower’s surface. With specially formulated silver pearl-colored paint on the aluminum components, the tower glows warmly against the peak and the city. The tower of Two International Finance Centre culminates in a sculptural crown. Its open design brings the sky into the tower top, partially dematerializing the building form as it reaches its highest point. When lit at night, the tower top is visible from miles away, a welcoming gesture at the gateway to the harbor.

The landmark building incorporates minimum structure to maximise the panoramic view. The floor framing is such that, on the primary faces, there is a clear 24m span between supporting columns, creating maximum opportunities for unobstructed views from this prominently located tower. The mega tower was designed to withstand strong typhoons, a major consideration for tall buildings in Hong Kong.

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