Developer attacks "ridiculous" reports that
skyscraper has no elevators


News: the developer behind Europe's tallest residential towers has attacked "fake and insidious" press coverage of the project, after claims that the 47-storey skyscraper has been built without elevators went viral.

Rafael Ballesta, sales manager for the Edificio Intempo residential towers, described the media storm as "ridiculous" and said: "We are constructing the highest residential skyscraper in Europe so how is it possible to build without elevators?"

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Edificio Intempo under construction

Dezeen was one of several publications to feature the story, which was originally reported by Spanish newspaper El Pais.

"The journalist from El Pais issued some fake news and everyone else just copy-and-pasted it," Ballesta told Dezeen. "People must not believe this fake news".

A Twitter account dedicated to the Edificio Intempo building, which is nearing completion in the Benidorm beach resort on Spain's Mediterranean coast, has responded to some of the publications who reported the news by tweeting that it is false and its elevators are working.

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Tweet from Edificio Intempo

Another tweet links to a document published by engineers Florentino Regalado & Asociados showing section views of the building, including elevator shafts.

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Plan view showing elevator shafts

Ballesta says the towers feature six "latest generation" elevators, with three installed in each of the twin towers.

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Photo showing the elevator control panel by Raquel López

A Spanish journalist who has visited the building posted on her website that she had ascended as far as the building's 45th floor using its elevators and included a photo that claims to show the elevator's unfinished operating panel.

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Photo of elevators from Edificio Intempo's website

The project's website also features photos of lift doors within the building.

In its story on 20 July, El Pais reported that the building was originally designed with 20 storeys, but developers later decided to extend it to 47 storeys and neglected to allow the extra room required by a lift ascending over twice as far. This meant that the top half of the building would be inaccessible by elevator.

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Apartment interior

The twin 200 metre-tall building, designed by Roberto Perez Guerras Architects, claims to be Europe's tallest residential building and is scheduled for completion in December 2013. Consisting of two slender towers joined at the top by an inverted conical structure, Edificio Intempo contains 269 luxury apartments, which are being marketed primarily to Russian buyers.

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  • VDK

    Now, you got the attention.

    • kate

      I heard that the windows are painted on…

  • ADC

    Good job checking your facts Dezeen…

  • Robin

    That is not a ‘section view’. It is a plan. Surely Dezeen should know this?

    • dezeen_intense

      Oops! Corrected now. Thanks for pointing out the error!


  • fraperica

    Great. Now can I say that actually I quite like the building. If it weren’t for the codpiece and cladding i may find it striking. Even beautiful.

  • ahaus

    Still, three elevators for a 20-storey building may be fine, but it’s not sufficient for a 47-storey building.

    • Bert

      There are six, not three.

  • Rob

    Did Mr. Ballesta really blame El Pais? In other media the developer blamed bad translation of the original El Pais article by foreign media. Reading this new article I get the strong impression Dezeen didn’t talk to Mr. Ballesta at all, rather Dezeen copy and pasted tweets together with snippets taken from other sources.

    Once again, it shows Dezeen shouldn’t try writing opinion pieces or journalistic articles, but rather stick to documenting projects, something Dezeen is good at.

    • Hi Rob,

      Alyn at Dezeen spoke to Rafael by phone on Tuesday.


    • HHH

      Absolutely, I do agree. “Just focus on documentation” please. Don’t try to show the intellectual part or worse, create boring discussion. If I want something intellectual, I go elsewhere.