British Telecom Tower

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British Telecom Tower ( 480x640 )
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British Telecom Tower is located on Lionel Street in Birmingham and it is one of the city’s landmarks. Formerly it was known as Post Office Tower and before that GPO Tower. It was completed in 1966. It is 152 metres (500 feet) tall, the tallest building in the city.

The building was designed by the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works; M. H. Bristow being the senior architect. The works started in 1963 and the tower was completed in September 1965. Although it became operational in December 1966, it was officially opened just in October the following year by Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Alderman James S. Meadows.

The height of the tower is 152 metres. There are 31 floors, 26 of them are offices and technical areas, the rest are created by circular aerial galleries. Originally the tower was supposed to have a circular shape, but it was changed to a square footprint. The tower was designed to be stable in high winds because a stable platform is necessary in this kind of construction.

There were two steel rails on one wall on which a trolley was designed to run to carry the dishes up to the aerial galleries. The ability to lift dishes depended on the weather and the steel rails only went to the bottom of the first aerial gallery. To get the dishes higher a steel cable system mounted on poles was used.

Originally the tower was of brown colour. However, in 2003 it was repainted ultramarine blue with dark blue balconies. In 2004 it was illuminated at night. The tower is known for being home to roosting Peregrines. The tower supports are built over the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal.
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