Canton Tower

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Height: Occupied
448.8 m / 1,472 ft
Height: To Tip
604 m / 1,982 ft
Height: Architectural
604 m / 1,982 ft
Canton Tower Outline
Height: Observatory
488 m / 1,601 ft
Floors Above Ground
Floors Below Ground
# of Elevators
Top Elevator Speed
10 m/s
Tower GFA
114,054 m² / 1,227,667 ft²


Official Name Canton Tower
Other Names Guangzhou TV Tower
Structure Type Tower
Status Completed
Country China
City Guangzhou
Street Address & Map Yiyuan Road
Postal Code 510310
Building Function telecommunications / observation
Structural Material composite
Proposed 2004
Construction Start 2005
Completion 2010
Official Website Canton Tower

Companies Involved

Owner/Developer Guangzhou New TV Tower Co., Ltd.
Design Information Based Architecture
Architect of Record Guangzhou Design Institute
Structural Engineer
Design Arup
MEP Engineer
Design Arup
Main Contractor Guangzhou Municipal Construction Group JV; Shanghai Construction Group
Other Consultant
• Landscape Guangzhou Design Institute
• Lighting Arup
Material Supplier
• Elevator Otis Elevator Company
• Paint/Coating Jotun

About Canton Tower

Located on the banks of the Pear (Zhujiang) River, Canton Tower stands across from the new main central business district of Guangzhou and creates a visual axis through the center of the city’s tallest skyscraper cluster. The axis begins in a park space to the south of the tower footprint and travels northward, crossing the river and running through the center of a large rooftop park spanning the top of a subterranean mall ringed with high-rise buildings. Continuing northward, the axis passes through additional open spaces, bisects a stadium and ends at CITIC Plaza, Guangzhou’s first supertall building, completed in 1996.

Canton Tower was constructed as a composite tube-in-tube design, featuring a reinforced concrete core containing all of the tower’s services and vertical transportation which is then set inside an outer structure made up of a steel lattice. The two structural components then frame a series of smaller structures suspended within the tower at different elevations. The smaller structures contain occupiable spaces with elliptical floor plates which rotate in orientation over the height of the tower. The rotation is then expressed to the outside of the tower through the twisting form of the steel skeletal structure, further emphasized through tapering inward to midpoint before expanding outward towards the uppermost levels. The roofs of the smaller structures within the tower have publicly accessible skygardens, allowing visitors to experience the variations of weather at different heights while serving as outdoor observation decks.

The slender form of the tower’s design makes it especially vulnerable to sway on windy days, creating the possibility for stresses on the structure and uncomfortable conditions for the occupants. As such, the design required the inclusion of a tuned mass damper system, the final compilation of which is comprised of a hybrid mass damper utilizing two 650 ton water tanks supplemented by motorized active mass dampers working in synch as the structure begins to move.

After sunset, the entire structure is illuminated in a light display of changing colors through an integrated system of LED fixtures; ensuring Canton Tower is a highly visible feature of the Guangzhou skyline during the day or night.

CTBUH Initiatives

Vertical Transportation: Ascent & Acceleration
12 Sep 2017 – CTBUH Research

A New Leader for Telecom Towers
19-19 Feb 2014 – CTBUH Research Report

Research Papers

World’s Highest Observation Decks
Aug 2015 – CTBUH Journal, 2015 Issue III

A New Leader for Telecom Towers
Jun 2012 – CTBUH Journal, 2012 Issue II

Hybrid Mass Dampers for Canton Tower
Feb 2012 – CTBUH Journal, 2012 Issue I

Other Building Facts

Has world`s highest post office at 428 meters.

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