Europe's Tallest Tower Tops Out in Moscow

Mere months after it was completed, London's Shard has passed the title of Europe's tallest building to Moscow's Mercury City tower, a "beacon of pink mirrored glass," writes Oliver Wainwright.

At 339 meters, the Mercury City tower has tilted the race for the title of Europe's tallest building to the east, where Russia is keen to make a statement about its economic development. And it may be a while before Western Europe catches up. As Wainwright reports, "[t]he building joins a motley cluster in the emerging Moscow International Business Centre, a $12bn complex initiated by former mayor Yuri Luzhkov as a playground for rival oligarchs to demonstrate their penile might."

"Designed by the late American architect Frank Williams, working with Moscow's Mikhail Posokhin, the $1bn tower stands as a tapering mountain of trapezoidal blocks. If you screw your eyes up, its faceted steps recall early expressionist architecture and the crystalline forms of Hugh Ferris's New York setback diagrams – only here interpreted with a clumsy commercial bulk."

"Mercury City will not enjoy its title for long: it will soon be overtaken by Federation tower," notes Wainwright, "which takes the form of two triangular blocks connected by sky bridges and penetrated by a great spike, and will soar to 506m."

Full Story: Russia's Mercury City tower cuts the Shard down to size


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