Published November 01, 2012
MOSCOW – Moscow is reclaiming bragging rights for having Europe's tallest building after losing the distinction for a few months to London.
The mixed office and residential tower called Mercury City has topped out at 338 meters (1,109 feet), officials of its development company said Thursday.
The tower, sheathed in copper-colored glass, actually became Europe's tallest in September, while still under construction, when it exceeded London's 310-meter (1,017-foot) Shard, according to the construction information company Emporis.
Mercury City's reign is likely to be almost as short. It's next-door to the under-construction Federation Tower, which is to reach 506 meters (1,660 feet) when it's completed next year.
Both are in a sprawling development called Moscow City that also holds two other buildings that once were Europe's tallest.
The complex is an eye-catching demonstration of Moscow's transformation from drab shabbiness to swaggering prosperity, driven largely by oil and natural gas revenues.
Mercury City "distinctly shows the activity of Russian business ... it demonstrates that all of Russia is on a level with countries of the eurozone, continuing its planned development and moving forward," Igor Kesayev, director of the Mercury company, was quoted as saying by the news agency Interfax.
But competing with European countries for tallest building is playing in the minor leagues. There are nearly 60 buildings in North America, Asia and the Middle East that are taller, topped by Dubai's Burj Khalifa — about 2.5 times taller than Mercury city at 828 meters (2,717 feet).