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Top 10 tallest buildings in Africa and their heights

Africa, a continent known for its diverse landscapes and rich cultural heritage, is also home to some remarkable architectural marvels. Over the past few decades, Africa has witnessed a surge in the construction of tall buildings, reshaping the skylines of its major cities. In this article, we will take you on a journey to explore the top 10 tallest buildings in Africa, their impressive heights, and the countries where they stand tall.

1The Iconic Tower393.8 meters (1,292 ft)Egypt
2The Leonardo234 meters (768 ft)South Africa
3Carlton Centre223 meters (732 ft)South Africa
4Britam Tower95 meters (640 ft)Kenya
5The Commercial Bank of Ethiopia Headquarters198 meters (650 ft)Ethiopia
6Nairobi Global Trade Centre Office Tower184 meters (604 ft)Kenya
7Ponte City Apartment173 meters (567.6 ft)South Africa
8UAP Tower163 meters (535 ft)Kenya
9NECOM House160 meters (525 ft)Nigeria
10Tanzania Ports Authority Tower157 meters (515 ft)Tanzania

1. The Iconic Tower: A Symbol of Modernity in Egypt

Top 10 tallest buildings in Africa and their heights

Standing tall in the New Administrative Capital of Egypt, the Iconic Tower reigns as the tallest building in Africa. With a staggering height of 393.8 meters (1,292 ft), this architectural masterpiece dominates the skyline. The Iconic Tower, part of the Central Business District, boasts 80 floors primarily dedicated to commercial office spaces. Its sleek design and modern aesthetics make it a symbol of progress and innovation in Egypt.

2. The Leonardo: A Towering Achievement in South Africa

2. The Leonardo: A Towering Achievement in South Africa

Rising high in the bustling city of Johannesburg, South Africa, The Leonardo takes the second spot on our list of the tallest buildings in Africa. This 55-floor mixed-tenure high-rise property reaches a height of 234 meters (768 ft), surpassing its predecessor, the Carlton Centre. The Leonardo, designed by the renowned Co-Arc International Architects, combines residential apartments and commercial office spaces, offering a panoramic view of the city.

3. Carlton Centre: A Timeless Landmark in South Africa

Carlton Centre

For four decades, the Carlton Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa, held the title of the tallest building in Africa. Constructed in the early 1970s, this iconic skyscraper stands at a height of 223 meters (732 ft) with 50 floors. Its architectural design draws inspiration from New York’s One Seneca Tower, adding a touch of grandeur to the Johannesburg skyline.

4. Britam Tower: A Modern Marvel in Kenya

4. Britam Tower: A Modern Marvel in Kenya

In the vibrant city of Nairobi, Kenya, the Britam Tower stands tall as a testament to architectural excellence. With a maximum height of 195 meters (640 ft) and 32 usable floors, it is the second-tallest building in Africa by pinnacle height. What sets Britam Tower apart is its unique prismic shape, starting as a square footprint and transforming into a two-sided roof with a 60-meter mast adorned with three helical wind turbines.

5. The Commercial Bank of Ethiopia Headquarters: A Symbol of Financial Power

5. The Commercial Bank of Ethiopia Headquarters: A Symbol of Financial Power

Addis Ababa, the capital city of Ethiopia, boasts the tallest building in the country and the fifth-tallest in Africa. The Commercial Bank of Ethiopia Headquarters, standing at 198 meters (650 ft) with 52 stories, dominates the city skyline. Although the completion of this architectural masterpiece faced intermittent delays, it has now become an iconic symbol of Ethiopia’s growing financial sector.

6. Nairobi Global Trade Centre Office Tower: A Hub of Business and Innovation

Nairobi Global Trade Centre Office Tower

Nairobi, the economic hub of Kenya, is home to the Nairobi Global Trade Centre Office Tower. Soaring to a height of 184 meters (604 ft) with 42 floors, this tower is a prominent feature of the city’s skyline. Completed in 2021, the Nairobi Global Trade Centre Office Tower is part of a larger development that includes two other towers, further enhancing Nairobi’s reputation as a center of business and innovation.

7. Ponte City Apartment: A Vertical Community in South Africa

7. Ponte City Apartment: A Vertical Community in South Africa

Located in the vibrant neighborhood of Berea, Johannesburg, Ponte City Apartment stands as a unique cylindrical skyscraper. With a height of 173 meters (567.6 ft) and 55 stories, this architectural gem has an open center referred to as “the core,” allowing abundant natural light into the apartments. Ponte City Apartment’s design, rising above an uneven rock floor, showcases a harmonious blend of functionality and aesthetics.

8. UAP Tower: A Modern Business Hub in Kenya

8. UAP Tower: A Modern Business Hub in Kenya

In the Upper Hill neighborhood of Nairobi, Kenya, the UAP Tower graces the skyline as a 33-story office complex. Standing at a height of 163 meters (535 ft), it serves as the second-tallest building in Nairobi. The UAP Tower, completed in 2016, is owned by the UAP Old Mutual Group and features a sleek and contemporary design, making it a prominent landmark in the city.

9. NECOM House: A Telecommunications Legacy in Nigeria

Lagos, the bustling metropolis of Nigeria, is home to NECOM House, a 32-story skyscraper. With a height of 160 meters (525 ft), this architectural marvel was completed in 1979 and was initially known as the NITEL Tower, reflecting its association with the telecommunications industry. NECOM House stands as a testament to Nigeria’s progress in the field of communication and technology.

10. Tanzania Ports Authority Tower: A Symbol of Growth in Dar es Salaam

Tanzania Ports Authority Towe

Completing our list is the Tanzania Ports Authority Tower, standing tall at 157 meters (515 ft) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. This 40-story building serves as a landmark in the city and reflects Tanzania’s growth and development. With its completion in 2016, the Tanzania Ports Authority Tower took its place among the tallest buildings in Africa, showcasing the nation’s ambitions and aspirations.

Upcoming Tallest Buildings: Shaping the Skyline of Tomorrow

Africa’s skyline continues to evolve as new projects are proposed and under development. Let’s take a glimpse into the future and explore some of the upcoming tallest buildings that will shape the continent’s architectural landscape.

Father and Son Skyscraper: A Towering Vision in Cairo, Egypt

Proposed in Cairo, Egypt, the Father and Son Skyscraper is set to reach a remarkable height of 470 meters (1,542 ft). Designed by IAMZ Studio, this skyscraper stands as a testament to innovation and urban design. Its unique components, including style, shape, and integration of green spaces, create a harmonious blend of aesthetics and sustainability.

Sand Tower: A Vertical Oasis in Merzouga, Morocco

Merzouga, Morocco, is set to embrace the future with the proposed Sand Tower. This 450-meter (1,476 ft) high-rise, designed by French practices OXO Architectes and Nicolas Laisne Associes, aims to be a vertical city in the midst of the desert’s challenges. The Sand Tower promises to redefine the concept of sustainability, towering above the wilderness and providing a refuge in an arid landscape.

Durban Iconic Tower: A Landmark in the Making

In Durban, South Africa, plans are underway for the construction of the Durban Iconic Tower. With a proposed height of 370 meters (1,214 ft), this multi-billion Rand skyscraper aims to become one of the tallest buildings in Africa and the Southern Hemisphere. If built, the Durban Iconic Tower will surpass the Leonardo and become a symbol of progress and modernity in South Africa.

The Pinnacle: A Towering Vision in Nairobi, Kenya

Nairobi, Kenya, is set to welcome The Pinnacle, a towering skyscraper that will transform the city’s skyline. With a planned height of over 300 meters (984 ft) and 70 stories, The Pinnacle will become the second-tallest tower in Africa. This architectural marvel, upon completion, will showcase Kenya’s ambition and place Nairobi among the leading cities in the realm of modern architecture.

Africa’s architectural landscape continues to evolve, with tall buildings symbolizing progress, innovation, and economic growth. These impressive structures not only redefine skylines but also serve as iconic landmarks, reflecting the aspirations and achievements of their respective countries. As Africa embraces the future, we can expect to witness more awe-inspiring skyscrapers rising to new heights, shaping the continent’s urban landscape and leaving an indelible mark on its history.

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