Space isn’t infinite on planet Earth, but there are some storage areas that belie this fact. Here we consider the biggest storage spaces ever created, with interesting facts about the logistics, planning and major construction work that went into building them.

Millennium Seed Bank

Millenium Seed Bank
photo by Emma Cooper (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Kew Millennium Seed Bank has a total footprint of 5,000 square metres, is built to last at least 500 years and can withstand a nuclear disaster equivalent to that of Chernobyl. It’s the largest seed bank on earth and was designed to be capable of saving seeds for the entire world’s population of wild plants. It comprises domed glass laboratories and a climate controlled underground vault capable of accommodating 30 red double-decker London buses, on a total floor area of 930 square metres.


Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller

Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller
photo by Walter Rademacher (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller is a Triple-E class container vessel and is the largest class of ship in service. It’s 400 metres long and 59 metres wide, and has the capacity to transport more than 18,000 standard-size containers at a time. Its draft – or depth underwater – of 14.5 metres means that it can’t berth anywhere in the Americas or even cross the Panama Canal. It’s operated by twin 32-megawatt, ultra-long stroke diesel engines, built for slow steaming, and can carry a deadweight of 165,000 tonnes.


Hermitage Museum

Hermitage Museum
photo by Kwong Yee Cheng (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

The Hermitage Museum complex in St Petersburg, Russia is the largest of its kind in the world. It comprises a number of separate buildings, including the Winter Palace – the vast, opulent palace of the Tsars, the Menshikov Palace and the Small, Old and New Hermitages. In total, the museum complex houses almost three million items, including the largest collection of paintings on earth.


The Boneyard

The Boneyard
photo by Airman Magazine (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Boneyard, also known as the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG), in Tucson, Arizona is a 2,600-acre aircraft cemetery that accommodates thousands of out-of-service aeroplanes and helicopters, hailing from as far back as World War II. Many of these aircraft are eventually repaired and sold or are used for their spare parts, so don’t be surprised to see vacuum-packed aircraft all neatly lined up in rows. At last count, the Boneyard was home to approximately 4,500 military aircraft, spread across the equivalent of 1,300 football fields and valued at $35 billion.


British Library

British Library
photo by Istvan (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Featuring a total floor area of 112,000 square metres and 625 kilometres of shelf space, the British library is the biggest of its kind in the world. It’s also the largest public building constructed in the United Kingdom in the 20th Century. It was constructed from 10 million bricks and 180,000 tonnes of concrete. The British Library contains roughly 150 million items, including maps, stamps, musical scores, manuscripts and books. If you viewed five items a day, it would take you 80,000 years to see the entire collection! Each year, about three million items are added to the collection. Among the priceless treasures in the library are the Lindisfarne Gospels, Gutenberg Bibles and the Magna Carta.

XtraSpace Self Storage Space

XtraSpace storage space
XtraSpace Storage Units

At XtraSpace we may not have the World’s largest storage space ever created, but we do offer storage facilities at 15 storage centres across South Africa and currently have over 4000 storage units available at these. So if you’re looking for a selection of flexibly sized storage units then contact us and we’ll sort your personal or business storage challenges in a flash!

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