Number of buildings rises 0.9%
According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport on Thursday, the country had 7.19 million buildings in 2018, 65,386 more than a year earlier. Floor area totaled 3.75 billion square meters, up 112.2 million square meters year-on-year.
Expansion was fastest outside of Seoul, with the total floor area totalling 2 billion square meters, up 3.2 percent. In the Seoul region, floor area totaled 1.69 billion square meters, up 2.98 percent.
Commercial-building floor area grew 3.7 percent, to 814.6 million square meters, followed by residential space, up 3.1 percent, or 1.77 billion square meters. Cultural, educational and social building space increased 3 percent to 339.4 million square meters, while industrial space was up 1.3 percent to 415.2 million square meters.
In the greater Seoul area, commercial space grew 4.1 percent, followed by residential space, up 3.2 percent. Cultural, education and social space was up 2.1 percent, while industrial was up 0.3 percent.
In other regions, cultural, education and social building space grew 3.8 percent, commercial space 3.2 percent and residential space 3 percent. Industrial-purpose building space was up 2.2 percent.
The ministry said last year nearly 2.67 million buildings were more than 30 years old, which is 37.1 percent of all buildings.
In regions outside the capital, the ratio was 40.8 percent.
In Seoul, Gyeonggi and Incheon, the ratio was 27.5 percent. Those in that area built 20 to 30 years ago amounted to 21.1 percent of the total.
For residential buildings, 32.8 percent in the greater Seoul area were built more than 30 years, while 50.9 percent of residential buildings in other regions were older than 30 years.
Last year, 70,257 buildings were demolished, a 2.9-percent decline compared to those demolished in 2017. In Seoul, the number of demolished buildings declined 9 percent.
Lotte World Tower in Jamsil was the tallest building, at 555 meters tall and 123 stories. The country has 107 buildings that are 50 stories high or higher, up four from 2017.
This year, two more are expected to be added on the list: Two skyscrapers that are 100 stories high are scheduled for completion in Busan.
BY LEE HO-JEONG [email@example.com]