The Fernsehturm (German for “television tower”) is a television tower in the city centre of Berlin, Germany. Close to Alexanderplatz the tower, which is 368 metres high, was constructed between 1965 and 1969 by the former German Democratic Republic administration who intended it as a symbol of Berlin.
The original total height of the tower was 365 metres (1,198 ft), but it rose to 368 metres (1,207 ft) after the installation of a new antenna in the 1990’s. There is a visitor platform and a revolving restaurant in the middle of the sphere. The visitor platform is at a height of about 204 metres (669 ft) above the ground and visibility can reach 42 kilometres (26 mi) on a clear day. The restaurant, which rotates once every 30 minutes is a few metres above the visitors platform (originally it turned once per hour; the speed was later doubled following the tower’s late 1990s renovation). Inside the shaft are two lifts that shuttle visitors up to the sphere of the tower within 40 seconds. It is not accessible by wheelchair.
When the sun shines on the Fernsehturm’s tiled stainless steel dome, the reflection usually appears in the form of a crucifix. In the then divided city West Berliners immediately named the luminous cross Rache des Papstes, or “Pope’s Revenge“.
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