Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #2076: Skyscraper basic
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- A skyscraper is a very tall building with many floors. The term 'skyscraper' was originally used in the 1880s after the first tall buildings were constructed in the USA. It is a name usually given to a building with more than 40 floors.
- The first skyscrapers were built in Chicago and New York.
- Radio and television towers are not considered as skyscrapers because people cannot live or work in them. Some of them are even taller than skyscrapers but these do not have floors like other buildings. These towers have observation decks and receivers near the top.
- An American architect, William le Baron Jenney, built the first skyscraper - the Chicago Home Insurance Building - in 1885.
- We build skyscrapers because of lack of space. A skyscraper uses a small amount of space on the ground but has a lot of floor space inside.
- The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat has suggested the following points to decide the tallest building: The height of the structural or architectural top, the height of the highest occupied floor, the height of the top of the roof and the height of the top of antenna.
- All skyscrapers have the same basic design. The floors and walls are supported by a strong steel or concrete frame. The frame then rests on foundations that bear the weight of the skyscraper in the ground. These foundations help to prevent the skyscraper from sinking in tho the ground.
- Skyscrapers may be used as offices, residential buildings or for hotels and shopping centres.
- John Hancock Centre in Chicago has America's highest indoor swimming pool on its 44th floor sky lobby.
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