Many of the most significant buildings in the world are mixed-use buildings, towering hundreds of meters in height with an impressive number of floors and housing administrative/office spaces, commercial spaces, hospitality and residential spaces. Office buildings are one of these and are usually iconic structures that stand out wherever they are built. According to Whole Building Design Guide, “an office space refers to a variety of spaces including meeting spaces integrated into the office environment, reception, office support spaces such as work rooms, storage rooms, file rooms, mail rooms, copier areas, service units/coffee bar, and coat storage integrated into the office environment, and telephone and communications equipment rooms located in tenant suites containing tenant equipment”.

Office buildings are often used as government or corporate headquarters and feature state-of-the-art technology and luxurious amenities. Here are ten of the world’s largest office buildings:

The Pentagon, United States:

 The Pentagon is the headquarters of the United States Department of Defence and is located in Arlington, Virginia. It is the largest office building in the world, with a total floor area of about 6.5 million square feet. It is home to over 23,000 military and civilian employees. It was designed by George Bergstrom, constructed by John McShain, completed in 1943, and cost around $83 million to construct at that time.

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The Pentagon_©https://www.flickr.com/photos/mindfrieze/2196640900

The Merdeka Palace, Indonesia:

 The Merdeka Palace, also known as the Presidential Palace, is located in Jakarta, Indonesia. It is the official residence of the President of Indonesia and has a total floor area of about 6.3 million square feet, which is used for official state events. It was designed by Jacobus Bartholomeus Drossaers, constructed by the Department of Public Works with Drossaers as the contracting firm, and completed in 1879. 

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The Merdeka Palace_©https://www.nationsonline.org/oneworld/indonesia.htm

The Great Hall of the People, China

 Designed by Zhao Dongri and Shen Qi, construction lasted ten months, and the building was opened in September 1959; the Great Hall of the People is an office building located in Beijing, China. It is used for legislative and ceremonial activities and has a total floor area of about 5.7 million square feet. 

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The Great Hall of the People_©https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Hall_of_the_People

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Headquarters, United States

The CIA Headquarters is located in Langley, Virginia. It is the primary intelligence-gathering agency of the United States and has a total floor area of about 4.3 million square feet. It was designed in the mid-1950s by a New York firm, Harrison and Abramovitz.  

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CIA Headquarters (Night view)_©https://pixabay.com/photos/cia-headquarter-building-night-104658/

The United States Capitol, United States

 The United States Capitol is the meeting place of the United States Congress in Washington, D.C. It has a total floor area of about 4.0 million square feet. William Thornton designed it, and the first sectional completion was in 1800. The building has undergone some completions and restorations ever since. 

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The United States Capitol_©https://unsplash.com/photos/CDsAkr_mBeg

The Palace of the Parliament, Romania

 The Palace of the Parliament is the seat of the Parliament of Romania and is located in Bucharest. It is the second-largest administrative building in the world, with a total floor area of about 3.9 million square feet. It is also the heaviest building in the world, weighing 9.04 billion pounds. It was designed and supervised by Anca Petrescu, with a team of approximately 700 architects, and constructed over 13 years (1984-1997).  

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The Palace of the Parliament, Romania_©https://rolandia.eu/en/blog/places/palace-of-the-parliament

The National Assembly Building, Bangladesh

The National Assembly Building is the meeting place of the Parliament of Bangladesh and is located in Dhaka. It has a total floor area of about 3.7 million square feet. Designed by Louis Khan, constructed in 1961 and opened in 1982.

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The National Assembly Building, Bangladesh_©https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sangshad_2.jpg

The Shanghai World Financial Center, China

The Shanghai World Financial Center is a mixed-use skyscraper located in Shanghai, China. It has a total floor area of about 3.4 million square feet. A mixed-use skyscraper designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and developed by the Mori Building Company, with Leslie E. Robertson Associates as its structural engineer and China State Construction Engineering Corp and Shanghai Construction (Group) General Co. as its main contractor. Construction started in 1997, was completed in 2008, and opened the same year. 

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The Shanghai World Financial Center, China_©https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shanghai_World_Financial_Center

The Bank of China Tower, China

 The Bank of China Tower is a skyscraper located in Hong Kong, China. It has a total floor area of about 3.2 million square feet. The building was designed by Chinese-American architect I. M. Pei and L.C Pei of I.M Pei and Partners. Construction began in 1985, was completed in 1990, and opened in 1990.

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The Bank of China Tower, China_©https://www.archdaily.com/153297/ad-classics-bank-of-china-tower-i-m-pei

The Burj Khalifa, United Arab Emirates

 The Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is the tallest building in the world and has a total floor area of about 3.0 million square feet. It is home to offices, apartments, and a hotel. Designed by Adrain Smith, construction began in 2004, with the exterior completed five years later in 2009. The skyscraper building was opened in 2010.  

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Burj Khalifa_©https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burj_Khalifa.

These ten office buildings are some of the largest and most significant in the world and are known for their impressive size and architectural prowess.

References:

SpaceIQ (2022). 10 Largest Office Buildings in the World. [online]. Available at: https://spaceiq.com/blog/10-largest-office-buildings-in-the-world/ [Accessed 29 December 2022].

The WorkSpace (2022). 10 of the World’s Largest Office Buildings. [online]. Available at: https://www.theworkspace.co.za/blog/10-worlds-largest-office-buildings/ [Accessed 29 December 2022].

Whole Building Design Guide (2019). Office. [online]. Available at: https://www.wbdg.org/space-types/office [Accessed 29 December 2022].

Wikipedia (2022). List of largest office buildings. [online]. Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_largest_office_buildings [Accessed 29 December 2022].

Author

Ebelechukwu Ubaka is an Architect and a Writer with a zest for creating healthier and happier lives through Architecture solutions. She shares her views and opinions about Architecture and Architectural practice in Nigeria. She is on a mission to educate clients about how architects play a major role in their lives and how they can take advantage of such services.

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