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Tokyo tower becomes the world's tallest

Tokyo's Sky Tree completed Wednesday is the world's second tallest building and the tallest tower at over 2000 feet.

Sky Tree tower TokyoEnlarge
Tokyo's Sky Tree telecommunications tower is the tallest free standing structure in the world and the second tallest building after the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. (Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP/Getty Images)

Tokyo's Sky Tree, the world's tallest communications tower and the second largest building after the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, was completed Wedneday after a two month delay caused by the tsunami that pounded Japan's coast last March.

The 2000-foot tower was originally scheduled to be completed in December but a shortage of building materials after the natural disaster wiped away factories on Japan's east coast, slowed the project, reported The Age.

The tower began construction in July 2008 in the Asakusa traditional district in eastern the portion of the Japanese megalopolis.

The Sky Tree will top the 600-metre Canton Tower in China's Guangzhou and the 553-metre CN Tower in downtown Toronto, formerly the two tallest free standing structures in the world.

The new communications tower was built because the city's aging Sky Tower transmitter built in 1958 at just over 1000 feet, had trouble broadcoasting over the city's growing skyline, causing problems for digital television signals, according to the New Scientist.

According to the Bangkok Post, tourist operators are also hoping that the tower becomes a draw for visitors to the capital whose numbers have decreased since Japan's tsunami and nuclear scare.

Though the tower, which will have two observations decks and a restaurant, will open to the public at the beginning of summer, officials are expecting between two and three million visitors per year to the tower reported Voice of America.

According to News.au.com, nearly 580,000 workers were engaged in its construction and cost over 65 billion yen ($800 million) for the tower alone, a spokeswoman for the new tower said.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/japan/120301/tokyo-tower-becomes-the-worlds-tallest