South Africa is one of the economically and structurally developed countries in Africa. Its major cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg have undergone periods of construction booms than most of the African cities. South Africa’s major buildings are also centered around other economic centers including Durban, Port Elizabeth, Bloemfontein, and Pretoria. 50 of South Africa’s high-rise buildings are at least 328 feet tall. Durban has the highest number of skyscrapers (18) over 100 meters in height followed by Johannesburg and Cape Town with 13 and 19 buildings respectively. Here are some of South Africa’s tallest skyscrapers.
Four Tallest Buildings
Carlton Centre is not only the tallest building in South Africa but also in the entire continent of Africa. It has been Africa’s tallest building since 1973. Situated in downtown Johannesburg, the 732-foot tall skyscraper has 50 floors and a floor area of 811,110 square feet and is mainly used as a shopping center. Its construction began in the late 1960s following the demolition of the old Carlton Hotel. Although the construction work was completed in 1974, the occupation of Carlton Centre began as early as 1971. The topmost floor of the building is popularly known as “top of Africa.”
Ponte City Apartments
Ponte City is the second tallest skyscraper in South Africa and the tallest residential building in Africa at 568 feet. It is situated the neighborhood of Berea next to Hillbrow, Johannesburg. Ponte City Apartments is cylindrical and has 55 floors. The center, known as the “core” is opened to allow additional light and rises above an even floor. The building was designed by Mannie Feldman and its construction was completed in 1975. In the 1980s and 1990s, Ponte was known as a crime den. The owners abandoned the building to decay. It underwent revitalization from 2007 but the process was not completed due to lack of funds.
Marble Towers is the third-tallest skyscraper in South Africa at 499 feet. Situated on the corner of Von Wielligh and Jeppe Streets, Johannesburg, the building has 32 floors and 8 of which are a parking garage. Marble Towers was constructed in 1973 with its structure made of concrete and marble. It was initially known as the Sanlam Center. Marble Towers has mainly the commercial offices.
South African Reserve Bank Building
South African Reserve Bank Building is the tallest skyscraper in Pretoria at 499 feet. The building has 40 floors; 38 floors above the ground and two floors underground. As the name suggests, the building hosts South African Reserve Bank which is the central bank of South Africa. Its construction began in 1986 and was completed in 1988. There is an open square in front of the building decorated with terraces and fountains.
Other Notable Skyscrapers in South Africa
Although the above buildings are the four tallest skyscrapers in South Africa, there are other skyscrapers notable for their popularity and design. At the top of the list is the KwaDukuza eGoli Hotel, a 460-foot tall building, which was originally two separate towers of 40 and 22 floors but were linked by a podium with running truck and pool deck. Trust Bank Building which rises to a height of 460 feet has one of the largest vaults in the country. Finally, the Sandton City Office Tower was topped out in 2014 and is currently 6th tallest building in South Africa at 463 feet.