The tallest building in Western Europe is currently London's Shard—but that won't last if a tiny Danish town gets its way, the Smithsonian reports. Brande, population 7,000, has approved a 1,049-foot building for 30 retail stores, educational spaces, hotel rooms, and offices for a clothing company whose wealthy boss conceived the project. "The overall building project is thought as an investment in Brande, and the planned high-rise building will function as an icon for the new expansion," says Anders Holch Povlsen, owner of Bestseller clothing, in a press release. The so-called Town and Village project was approved in March and could begin rising this year, per the Washington Post. Not that all Danes are pining for an Eiffel Tower-size skyscraper in a little town.
"For most people looking at a project like this being built in a community as small as this is, it does seem rather insane, doesn't it?" a local politician tells the Guardian. Likewise, an architect says the project "will make the world claustrophobically small" and a satirical Danish newspaper sees the influence of Sauron from The Lord of the Rings: "I have offered to finance a major interactive art installation in the form of a blazing eye at the very top of the building," Sauron is quoted as saying. If it happens, this won't be among the world's 25 tallest buildings and may soon be topped by one from London or Paris, two European cities now approving skyscrapers after long resisting them. (Read more skyscraper stories.)