The exceptions are 1930-1954, when the Chrysler Building and later the Empire State Building overtook the Eiffel Tower (which in turn was overtaken by a sequence of broadcast masts, beginning with the Griffin Television Tower in Oklahoma), and since 2010 with the completion of the Burj Khalifa. The Eiffel Tower remains the world's tallest free-standing structure.
In terms of area, the Eiffel Tower is about the same size as the Empire State Building, but it is much taller, so its volume is more than twice that of the Empire State Building.
The diameter of the Eiffel Tower's base is 128 feet, while that of the Empire State Building's is 110 feet. The height of the Eiffel Tower from floor to tip-top is 324 feet, while that of the Empire State Building is 408 feet.
The mass of the Eiffel Tower has been estimated at between 70,000 and 80,000 tons, while that of the Empire State Building has been estimated at 2.7 million pounds or 1.22 billion grams.
It is difficult to compare the two structures because they were not designed to be comparable. The Eiffel Tower is small and light because it was designed to be a temporary exhibition site built for an industrial fair; it can be taken down after the event is over.
The Empire State Building, intended to be the world's first 100-story structure, began construction on March 17, 1930. Construction took a record-breaking 1 year and 45 days to finish. The Empire State Building is a world-famous architectural wonder, both inside and out. It is one of the tallest buildings in New York City, standing 1,454 feet (442 m) tall with all 72 floors completed.
In addition to its height, the building is known for its design by William Van Alen, the use of state-of-the-art technology, and its ability to light up at night. The Empire State Building has been called the "Titanic of Titans" because no other building before or since compares in size or complexity to this masterpiece of architecture.
Its designer, William Van Alen, named it after his home state of New York. He wanted people to know that a great building could be created within their own borders. When the building was complete in 1931, it stood like a beacon over New York City, signaling that anything was possible.
Today, visitors can go up in one of three modes: by elevator, by stairs, or by rappel tower. There are more than 24,000 steps to climb to reach the top! But anyone who completes the ascent will be rewarded with one of the most expansive views of New York City.
The Eiffel Tower stands 1,063 feet (324 meters) tall, including the top antenna. It is 984 feet without the antenna (300 m). It was the highest tower in the world until the Chrysler Building in New York was finished in 1930. The Eiffel Tower is still the second-highest structure in Paris (after the Tour de France), and it is visited by more than 40 million people a year.
In addition to being a popular tourist attraction, the Eiffel Tower has been used for broadcasting radio signals since 1925. It is now owned by the City of Paris and operated by the French company Agence pour la protection du patrimoine culturel en Internet (APPCI).
The elevator inside the tower will take you up 312 feet (97 m) to the observation deck, but you can also climb 286 steps to the top of the tower for a total height of about 1,500 feet (457 m).
The cost of building the Eiffel Tower was $46 million back then. Today, it would be around $100 million.
It took 80,000 man hours to build the Eiffel Tower! That's more than 3,000 jobs. In today's market, that number might only be able to hire 50 or 60 people due to high labor costs.