The first tallest structure in the world was the Great Pyramid of Giza, which held its record for nearly 4000 years. It was beat by the Lincoln Cathedral in the UK in 1311, which was topped by the Washington Monument, then the Eiffel Tower, and then the Chrysler Building in 1929.
North America saw the next wave of world-record skyscrapers, with the Empire State Building, the World Trade Center, and the Sears Tower.
Then Asia had their turn with the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, then the Taipei 101 Building.
The next and current tallest building is the Burj Khalifa, but it may soon be topped by the Jeddah Tower in Saudi Arabia, or the Burj Mubarak al-Kabir in Kuwait, or the Dubai Creek Tower, solidifying the Middle East as the current epicenter of supertall buildings in the world.
Designs for vertical cities of the future include Ultima Tower, the Tokyo Sky Mile Tower, and the Shimizu Mega City Pyramid. But the tallest building ever designed is the X-Seed 4000 building which would stretch 4 kilometers into the sky and house up to a million people.