The Fernsehturm or the Berlin TV Tower is a television tower in central Berlin, Germany, close to Alexanderplatz in Berlin. The tower had been constructed by the administration of the German Democratic Republic, between 1965 and 1969 and was proposed as a symbol of Berlin which stands till date since it is visible throughout the central as well as some suburban districts of Berlin.
Fernsehturm Berlin design and the construction presented the architects, building engineers and the structural engineers with many challenges. It was inaugurated on October 3, 1969 prior to the 20th anniversary of the GDR. Walter Ulbricht, the State Council Chairman of the GDR at that time considered it as one of the most important symbols demonstrating supremacy of socialist societies and this construction of the Berlin Television Tower portrayed that a bright future was being constructed in the East.
Though the GDR has since been history for a long time, the Berlin Television Tower still prevails and is accepted as a landmark for the whole of Germany. Each year, there are over a million visitors from various countries going up 200 metres to the observational level to take a breath-taking glimpse of the constantly changing city. Fernsehturm is the tallest structure in Germany with a height of 368 meters.
The Tower – Most Prominent Symbol of Germany
The Fernsehturm tower has become the most prominent symbols of Germany and is often seen in shots of films that are set in Berlin. Occasionally it is also known as Alex Tower, due to its location near Alexandraplatz. Its original height was 365 meters but was increased to 368 meters after the installation of a new antenna in 1990. The tower is the fourth tallest freestanding structure in Europe after Moscow’s Ostankino Tower, the Kiev TV Tower and the Riga Radio and TV Tower.
The middle of the sphere has a visitor platform which is also called panoramic floor that has a height of 203 meters above the ground and visibility can reach 42 kilometres on a clear day. It also has a revolving restaurant.
The restaurant Telecafe which is designed with an outer ring of revolving tables, serves coffee and snacks with reasonably priced meals, revolves once every 30 minutes and is some meters above the visitor platform at 207 meters. In the interior of the shaft are two lifts which transport visitors up the sphere of the Fernsehturm tower in a span of 40 seconds and is not accessible by wheelchair. It also has a staircase having 986 steps.
2006 FIFA World Cup
The final match had been played in the Berlin Olympic Station to mark the 2006 FIFA World Cup where the sphere had been decorated as a football with magenta coloured pentagons, which reflected the corporate colour of World Cup sponsor and owner of the Fernsehturm, Deutsche Telekom.
Around the base of the Fernsehturm tower lies an exhibition centre together with a restaurant building in a group that comprises of the Neptune fountain which was located on the palace square which had been gifted to the Emperor from the city of Berlin. The waterfalls are the depictions of the four German rivers namely the Elbe, Oder, Rhine and Weichsel.