There are several factors that drive a nation’s economic development and one of the most important but rarely recognized are the contributions of architecture to a country’s wealth and future growth.
In fact, spending millions and even billions to build mega projects and engineering wonders has been a daring economic strategy for many countries around the world.
Let’s take a look at some of the most economically important megaprojects today.
- Millau Viaduct
With a mast reaching over 343 meters, Millau Viaduct is considered as the tallest bridge in the world. It was designed by the famed architect, Norman Foster and brought into life by renowned engineer Michel Virlogeux.
The cable-stayed bridge is located in southern France and even during the early months after its completion, it immediately became an architectural icon. To accommodate the growing number of tourists, several shops and hotels have been built around the site.
Surrounding attractions have also benefited from the bridge’s popularity, even helping reopen a local glove factory because of the renewed interest in the nearby towns.
- Sydney Opera House
The famous Sydney Opera House in Australia is one of the world’s most favorite tourist attractions. Its construction began in 1957 but it was only after 16 when it was finally completed. Today, the attraction continues to fascinate millions of visitors every year.
According to a Deloitte report released during the Sydney Opera House’s 40th anniversary, the architecture is one of the country’s major economic assets, raking in $775 million to the nation’s economy annually. In fact, its cultural and iconic value have reached an outstanding $4.6 billion.
- Petronas Towers
Located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the 88-floor Petronas Towers are the tallest twin architectures in the world. It’s also one of the most recognized megaprojects because of its impressive use of the “paneling technique”, from 55000 glass panels and 33000 stainless steel.
The twin towers have been a part of Malaysia’s economic growth, attracting both tourists and investors worldwide, and helping improve the country’s GDP to be one of the most competitive in Asia.