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June 25, 2017

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Taipei 101 talks up elevators after CNN report

TAIPEI -- Taipei 101's spokesman was eager to talk up the landmark building's super-fast elevator after the distinctive feature was listed in a CNN article as one of the world's "12 elevators you need to see to believe."

Spokesman Michael Liu touted the fact that the building's twin elevators, which carry guests from the 5th floor to the 89th in just 37 seconds, are the Guinness record holders for world's fastest elevator for their impressive speed of 1,010 meters per minute (60 kilometers per hour).

They are also the steadiest, he added, bragging that a NT$50 coin (slightly larger in diameter than a US$1 coin) can stand on end for the entire length of the ride.

The elevators, which Liu likened to airplanes for their pressure-adjusting feature, have been fitted with tuned mass dampers, which reduce mechanical vibrations.

"Even today, we still do tests of NT$50 coins to illustrate how steady the elevators are," he said.

The braking system is another unique feature, using the same advanced materials as the outer shell of the space shuttle to withstand the high temperatures created by stopping from such a high speed.

At a total height of 508 meters, Taipei 101 itself still has the distinction of being the world's tallest "green" building, he added.

CNN posted the list of 12 exceptional elevators on Monday, originally released by blog Budget Travel last month.

"The tower's lifts reach the 89th-floor observatory in just 37 seconds, leaving riders well over a thousand feet above the city," writer Ryan Murphy said.

"From this viewpoint, every corner of the sprawling metropolis is tiny by sheer distance. Parks, temples, and even other skyscrapers and distant mountains are practically Lilliputian," he wrote, referring to the country of miniature people from "Gulliver's Travels."

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