China: World’s fastest lift to be installed in Guangzhou

Artist's impression of Guangzhou CTF Financial Centre An artist's impression of the Guangzhou CTF Financial Centre (right)

The fastest lift in the world is to be installed in a skyscraper currently under construction in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou, it seems.

The lifts at the Guangzhou CTF Financial Centre, which will be ready in 2016, will be able to reach a speed of 72km/h (44mph), the South China Morning Post reports. This means it will take just 43 seconds to travel 95 floors up the 440m shaft.

The lift is being developed by Japan's Hitachi, which says it will have brakes capable of withstanding the tremendous heat that could be generated if a malfunction occurred. The company will install two of the superfast machines in the building, along with 93 "slower" lifts.

Reports suggest China accounts for as much as 60% of the global demand for lifts, stimulating stiff competition in the sector. At the moment, the world's fastest elevator is in the Taipei 101 tower in Taiwan, and moves at 60.6km/h, a Hitachi official says.

At 530m (1,739ft), the Guangzhou skyscraper won't be China's tallest building - that title goes to the 632m Shanghai Tower. The world's tallest skyscraper is the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, but it may be overtaken in 2019 by the proposed 1km-high Kingdom Tower in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

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