The Leaning Tower of Pisa is the most famous leaning or inclined building in the world, but its degree of leaning pales in comparison to a modern building that intentionally inclines more than any other free-standing building in the world.
The building is the 35-story Capital Gate building located in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. Construction began in 2007 and was finished in 2011. The building has an incline of 18 degrees west from the bottom to the top, making it the tallest inclined building in the world. By comparison, the previous record holder of most inclined building, the Leaning Tower of Suurhusen in northwestern Germany, has an incline of 5.19 degrees, and the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa leans at 3.97 degrees.
The Capital Gate cost $231 million (US) to construct and is a mixed-use building with office and retail space, and the upper floors house the Hyatt Capital Gate hotel. The building has a central core that leans in the opposite direction to the inclination at the base and then straightens with the tower’s height. Four hundred ninety piles were drilled 98 feet (30 meters) into the ground to counter the effects from wind, gravitational, and seismic forces because of the extreme inclination of the building. There is an atrium between the 17th and 18th floors that has a lounge and a swimming pool.
Two other buildings have a greater inclination than Capital Gate, but they are much shorter, and the building’s inclination appears to be a design feature. These buildings don’t have full rooms that hang at that inclination. They are still impressive, nonetheless.
One building is the Museum of the Second World War in Gdańsk, Poland. It is six stories tall and inclines 56 degrees. The second building is the Dockland office building in Hamburg, Germany, which is eight stories tall and has an inclination on two sides of 66 degrees. It was built on land that was the site of a former dock, and the building resembles the form of a ship.