- Type: Attractions
- Localyte author: John B. Boyle
- The strange idea of building a 365 metre high television tower in the middle of a city grew out of the need for a separate television broadcasting system for the GDR. Today it has become one of the undisputed major landmarks of the unified city. The collective of Günther Kollmann carried out the construction in 1965–69. One of the considerations for its being sited at this location was the stability of the ground at this point. The Pergamom museum suffered from this problem, as did the Royal Treasury built by Schlüter. Legend has it that Walter Ulbricht decreed that it should be of a height that schoolchildren would easily remember. It should also not challenge the 537 meter high Ostankino tower in Moscow. The tower soars above Alexander Platz, the Red Town Hall, St. Mary's Church and the Neptune Fountain. There are two levels that are open to the public, at 203.78 m/668 feet, the viewing floor, and at 207.53 m/690 feet, the Telecafé. The Telecafé used to rotate once per hour giving a complete panorama of the city. This rotation rate was speeded up to once every thirty minutes a few years ago. This was because guests were lingering for too long. Since the Television Tower opened in 1969 scores of millions have gone aloft. Inside the shaft of the tower is a self-supporting steel structure that was originally used in the construction of the tower. The steel structure carries the two public lifts and the service lift as well as the supply cables. When the sun shines a huge cross is lit up on the globe. This is visible for miles and earned the tower the nickname 'God's revenge'. Deutsche Telecom AG owns the tower now. Television channels transmitted from here include TV-B and BBC World while radio channels include Kiss-FM, Klassik Radio and Berliner Rundfunk. The pavilions at the base of the tower contain offices, the studios of TV-B and one of Berlin's tourist information centres. In 1997 the aerial extension at the top of the tower was replaced by one three metres taller, making the total height of the tower 368 metres today. As with so many things, Berlin has a second telecommunication tower. This is in the southwest of the city on the Schaeferberg (Shepherd Mountain). The tower is 212 metres high and was constructed between 1961 and 1964 to provide communications links with the FRG. It is not open to the public.
- The description was provided by John B. Boyle
- Panoramastraße 1a
- Berlin, Berlin
- No Sweat
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