China The Biggest: Building

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China is now home to not only the biggest wall in the world, but the biggest building too. It is in the form of the new (UK-designed) Beijing airport’s third terminal, highlights of which include (thanks to Bloomberg):

    • 2.95 kilometers (1.83 miles) length, from end to end

    • 1.3 million square meters (14 million square feet) of floor space

    • 360,000 square meters of gold roof

    • 27 billion yuan ($3.8 billion) cost

    • 76 million passengers a year by 2015

Despite the absolutely staggering figures, it is the very human comparison with work closer to home that make the biggest impression around here:

    “Remarkably, it was commissioned and completed in a little over four years, less than the time it took to organize and conduct the public inquiry for Terminal 5 at Heathrow,” [which is a fraction of the size] Norman Foster, one of the architects, said in a statement.”

Things work differently in China. And on a different scale.

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