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The Puerta de Europa towers

 
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Dr. N. Subramanian
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:42 pm    Post subject: The Puerta de Europa towers Reply with quote

The Puerta de Europa towers



The Puerta de Europa towers (Gate of Europe or just Torres KIO) are twin office buildings in Madrid Spain. The towers have a height of 114 m  and have 26 floors. They were constructed from 1989 to 1996. The Puerta de Europa is the second tallest twin towers in Spain after the Torres de Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.


They were designed by the American architects Philip Johnson and John Burgee, built by Fomento de Construcciones y Contratas[1] and commissioned by the Kuwait Investment Office (hence their initial name "Torres KIO" or "KIO Towers"). Leslie E. Robertson Associates, RLLP New York (LERA) provided structural engineering services. Each building is 115 m tall with an inclination of 15°, making them the first inclined skyscrapers in the world. They are located near the Chamartín railway station, on the sides of the Plaza Castilla bus station, north from the Paseo de la Castellana and near the Cuatro Torres Business Area.

After the receivership of Grupo Torras, KIO had to sell the buildings, which are now owned by Bankia and Realia.


There is also a counterweight that is necessary to counteract the forces that could overturn the towers. It’s a 60x10x10 meter concrete counterweight. The structure of the buildings is made of steel so it can offer stability. The steel structure can be noticed by passers by.

The main structure is combined with stainless steel while the secondary structure is clad with red metal. The space between the structural elements has a dark reflective curtain that has charcoal mullions. Even if the towers are alike there is one element that differentiates them. The west tower has a blue helipad on the roof and its eastern twin has a red helipad.

They played a key role in the 1995 movie The Day of the Beast, whose climax took place on one of the then nearly-completed towers. The towers were also shot in the song sequence "oru koodai sunlight" in the popular Tamil film Sivaji.

References:
http://architectism.com/twin-towers-in-madrid-spain-puerta-de-europa/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gate_of_Europe
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