Trade Fair Tower: Pencil shaped European Skyscraper
The Messeturm, or Trade Fair Tower, is a 63-storey, 257 m skyscraper in the Westend-Süd district of Frankfurt, Germany. It is the second tallest building in Frankfurt, the second tallest building in Germany and the second tallest building in the European Union. It was the tallest building in Europe from its completion in 1991 until 1997 when it was surpassed by the Commerzbank Tower, which is also located in Frankfurt.
The Messeturm is located near the Frankfurt Trade Fair grounds. Helmut Jahn designed the Messeturm in a postmodern architectural style. It is regarded as one of the design classics among European skyscrapers. Despite its name, the Messeturm is not used for trade fair exhibitions but as an office building. It is one of the few buildings in Germany with their own postal code (60308), the others being Opernturm, another Frankfurt skyscraper, and the summit station on Zugspitze.
The Messeturm is similar in design to towers by other architects including the Bank of America Plaza in Atlanta, Georgia and Key Tower (1991) in Cleveland, Ohio. Frankfurters often call it Bleistift (“pencil”) due to its shape. The construction of the building’s foundation set a world record for the longest continuous concrete pour. Ninety trucks poured concrete for 78 hours into the 6-metre (20 ft) deep foundation. Its ground floor area is just 1,681 m2 (18,090 sq ft), and features a 36.3 m (119.1 ft) pyramid at the top.
The tower uses numerous geometric shapes in its design such as the square footprint which is the main shape used throughout the tower. It then rises to a cylindrical shape which finally completes in a pyramid, probably as expression of the masonry.
There are 900 parking places in a public parking garage and a direct connection to the subway.
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