Construction began here Saturday on China's tallest building, a 632-meter skyscraper called the Shanghai Center.
The center will be taller than the other two most famous skyscrapers in Shanghai, the 420.5-meter-tall Jin Mao Tower completed in 1999 and the 492-meter-tall Shanghai World Financial Center finished in August this year, all located in the central financial district of Lujiazui.
The new building will be completed in 2014, costing more than 14.8 billion yuan (about 2.2 billion U.S. dollars), according to the Shanghai Center Construction and Development Co., Ltd.
"The Shanghai Center is expected to increase domestic demand and economic growth amid the worldwide financial crisis," said Kong Qingwei, board chairman of the company.
Designed by Gensler, an American firm, the new landmark will twist as it rises and be surrounded by an outer glass wall.
The design with the name of "Dragon" was chosen from many candidates in June. The tower will feature nine gardens between the main building and the glass wall. A public park will also be in the building.
In addition, the Shanghai Center will be a "24-hour financial center," said Gu Jianping, general manager of the construction company.
"Everyday there is a period of four hours when all stock markets in the world are closed, but the globalization of economy and finance requires financial institutions to work around the clock," he said.
"So a special floor for stock exchange will be allocated at the Shanghai Center to satisfy the demands of different financial institutions," he said.