EXPLORE # 16
Photo taken on my trip to Hong Kong in 2007...dedicated to all my contacts living in this great city that i love to photograph again...
The International Finance Centre (abbr. IFC, branded as "ifc") is an integrated commercial development on the waterfront of Hong Kong's Central District.
A prominent landmark on Hong Kong Island, IFC consists of two
skyscrapers, the IFC Mall, and the 55-storey Four Seasons Hotel Hong
Kong. Tower 2 is the tallest building in Hong Kong, a title formerly
held by Central Plaza. It is the third-tallest building in the Greater
China region and the seventh-tallest office building in the world,
based on structural heights; by roof height, only the Taipei 101,
Shanghai World Financial Center, and Willis Tower exceed it. It is of
similar height to the former World Trade Center. The International
Commerce Centre, currently under construction above the MTR Kowloon
station and scheduled for completion in 2010, will surpass 2IFC in
each of these categories.
IFC was constructed and is owned by IFC Development, a consortium of Sun Hung Kai Properties, Henderson Land and Towngas.
The Airport Express Hong Kong Station is directly beneath it.
Two International Finance Centre, completed in 2003, is attached to the second phase of the ifc mall. This 415-meter-tall building, currently Hong Kong's tallest, is quoted as having 88 storeys and 22 high-ceiling trading floors to qualify as being extremely auspicious in Chinese culture. It is, however, short of the magic number, due to the fact that "taboo floors" like 14th and 24th are omitted as being inauspicious - 14 sounds like "definitely fatal" and 24 like "easily fatal" in Cantonese.
The highrise is designed to accommodate financial institutions. For example, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) is located at the 55th floor. It is equipped with advanced telecommunications, raised floors for flexible cabling management, and nearly column-free floor plans. The building expects to accommodate up to 15,000 people. It is one of relatively few buildings in the world equipped with double-deck elevators.
The 55th, 56th and the 77th to 88th floors were bought by the HKMA for US$ 480 million in 2001. An exhibition area, currently containing an exhibit of Hong Kong's monetary history, and a library of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority Information Centre occupy the 55th floor, and are open to the public during office hours.
Despite common practice for owners to allow naming buildings after its important tenants - the building accommodates some very prestigious tenants - the owners decided not to allow renaming of the building in fairness to all.[
According to Emporis, there are 7,650 skyscrapers in Hong Kong, which puts the city at the top of world rankings. The high density and tall skyline of Hong Kong's urban area is due to a lack of available sprawl space, with the average distance from the harbour front to the steep hills of Hong Kong Island at 1.3 km (0.81 mi), much of it reclaimed land. This lack of space causes demand for dense, high-rise offices and housing. Thirty-six of the world's 100 tallest residential buildings are in Hong Kong. More people in Hong Kong live or work above the 14th floor than anywhere else on Earth, making it the world's most vertical city.
As a result of the lack of space and demand for construction, few older buildings remain, and the city is becoming a centre for modern architecture. The International Commerce Centre (ICC), at 484 m (1,588 ft) high, is the tallest building in Hong Kong and the third tallest in the world, by height to roof measurement.  The tallest building prior to the ICC is Two International Finance Centre, at 415 m (1,362 ft) high. Other recognisable skyline features include the HSBC Headquarters Building, the triangular-topped Central Plaza with its pyramid-shaped spire, The Center with its night-time multi-coloured neon light show, and I. M. Pei's Bank of China Tower with its sharp, angular façade. According to the Emporis website, the city skyline has the biggest visual impact of all world cities. The oldest remaining historic structures including the Tsim Sha Tsui Clock Tower, the Central Police Station, and the remains of Kowloon Walled City were constructed during the 19th century and early 20th century.
IFC2 Hong Kong Architecture