Adelaide might not come to mind when we talk about places with expensive buildings, but a new hospital in the southern city has been named the third most costly project in the world after New York’s One World Trade Center and Bucharest’s Palace of the Parliament.

The New Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) designed by Silver Thomas Hanley in joint venture with DesignInc (STHDI), is listed by architectural data company Emporis as Australia’s most expensive project. At US $2.1 billion, the 11 storey hospital has beaten The Palazzo in Las Vegas and The Shard in London, both of which cost $1.9 billion, and Sydney’s $1 billion Chifley Tower, the only Australian project listed on the world’s top 10 most expensive skyscrapers list.

Constructed by Hansen Yuncken and Leighton Contractors and designed to admit more than 80,000 patients every year, the new RAH will be the largest capital investment project in the history of South Australia.

It will also be the state’s greenest hospital and one of Australia’s most technologically advanced hospitals, with a purpose-designed ICT engine that integrates patient records, and clinical, patient and FM support systems. It is expected to be completed at the end of 2016 due to a soil contamination issue.

Interestingly, the next most expensive Australian project on the 200-strong catalogue is another Adelaide project – the Myer Centre, which was completed in 1991 at a cost of $1 billion despite an initial budget of $443 million.

Taking up an entire city block, the project employed then innovative construction techniques during construction such as concrete filled steel tube columns and pre-fabricated pan floor formwork units based on the progressive strength methods.

Chifley Tower comes in at number 16, while Sydney’s ANZ Bank Centre takes the 25th spot.

However, the list seems to leave out two other large-scale, expensive Australian projects – the $2.03 billion Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth, and the $1.76 billion Gold Coast University Hospitals.

Fiona Stanley Hospital by Hassell, Silver Thomas Hanley and Hames Sharley. Photography by Peter Bennetts

Gold Coast University Hospital by PDT architects in association with STH Architects and Hassell

View the full list HERE