World's tallest tower, the Tokyo Skytree, opens

May 22, 2012
In a picture taken on November 10, 2010 Canton tower is illuminated with multicoloured lights as colourful boats float on the water during the final rehearsal for the opening ceremony of the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou. The 16th Asian Games will be held in the southern city, a major export hub in China, from November 12-27 and will be the biggest ever, with 45 countries and territories taking part in 42 sports.  CHINA OUT  AFP PHOTO (Photo credit should read AFP/AFP/Getty Images)
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In a picture taken on November 10, 2010

TOKYO (AP) — The world's tallest tower and Japan's biggest new landmark, the Tokyo Skytree, opened to the public on Tuesday.

Nearly 8,000 visitors were expected to take high-speed elevators up to the observation decks of the 634-meter (2,080-foot) tower to mark its opening. Some reportedly waited in line more than a week to get the coveted tickets for a panoramic view, though Tuesday ended up being cloudy in Tokyo.

Skytree is recognized by Guinness World Records as the tallest tower, beating out the Canton Tower in China, which is 600 meters (1,968 1/2 feet).

The world's tallest structure is Dubai's Burj Khalifa, which stands 828 meters (2,717 feet). That's in a different category because it's a skyscraper, not a tower.

The Skytree will serve as a broadcast tower for television and radio, along with being a tourist attraction. It replaces the 333-meter-tall (1,092 1/2-foot-tall) Tokyo Tower — a symbol of Japan's capital since 1958 — as the broadcast hub.