Argentina plans Latin America's tallest building

AP News
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Posted: Sep 10, 2014 7:21 PM

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina says it will build the tallest building in Latin America.

President Cristina Fernandez says the 1,165-foot (355-meter) tower is expected to cost around $300 million and will serve as a center for the entertainment industry, including television and movies studios "Hollywood" style.

Architectural plans released Wednesday depict it as being in the shape of Argentina's map while an outdoor stadium for 15,000 people at ground level is shaped like the map of the Falkland Islands. The British territory in the South Atlantic is claimed by Argentina, which calls it Las Malvinas.

Fernandez says the building, which will be lit in the sky-blue and white colors of the national flag, is to be constructed on state lands with private funding. It will be located on Demarchi island in southern Buenos Aires overlooking the River Plate and is planned to rise higher than the 984-foot (300-meter) Costanera Center tower nearing completion in Santiago, Chile.

The winning design for the Buenos Aires project was announced on Fernandez's Facebook page Wednesday. It comes as her government struggles with a recession, a shortage of dollars and one of the world's highest inflation rates.

The half-pipe ramp-like design of the building produced hundreds of comments on social media, including by professional skateboarder Tony Hawk. "Just after we left Argentina, they approve this skyscraper design (1200 feet tall). Coincidence?" Hawk said on his Twitter account.

Others took to social media to poke fun at the plan by posting images of King Kong on top of the building or a line graph resembling the structure that shows Argentina's spiraling inflation.

The building is expected to be completed within five years. Fernandez ends her presidential term in December 2015.