Glasgow Science Centre tower reopens

Glasgow Science Centre Tower The Science Centre tower is the tallest fully rotating tower in the world

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Glasgow Science Centre tower has reopened to the public after an almost four-year hiatus.

The problem-plagued £10m structure has been closed for more than 80% of its life since opening in 2001.

A £1.8m revamp has seen repairs completed to the thrust bearing and replacement lifts installed.

Journalists were given access to the 127m (416ft) rotating tower on Friday ahead of public visits, costing £4.95, to the 105-metre high viewing cabin.

Visitor experience

The Science Centre plans to keep the tower open during its summer season before closing on 2 November for the winter.

What's it like up the tower?

The height of the tower means that not only can you enjoy panoramic views of Glasgow but on a clear day can see for 20 miles in each direction, with The Trossachs, near Loch Lomond, and the hills on Arran also in sight.

Interactive tablets are dotted around the circular viewing platform meaning visitors can learn more about the buildings and landmarks far below them.

But while it holds the Guinness World Record for the tallest free-standing, full-rotating tower, you should wave goodbye to your visions of a revolving restaurant-type experience.

Nothing in the tower actually rotates while visitors are up it. The rotating element is simply a safety feature to ensure that the tower doesn't sway during prevailing winds, while the viewing platform can hold a maximum of 25 people at a time.

The tower, powered by four manually controlled motors, is said to be the only structure on Earth capable of rotating 360 degrees into the prevailing wind.

It holds the Guinness World Record for the tallest, fully rotating free-standing structure in the world and is also the tallest free-standing structure in Scotland.

The refurbishment of the tower has added a new interactive visitor experience area at its base and new technology in the viewing cabin.

Visitors to the viewing cabin will be able to take in 20-mile views of Glasgow and its surroundings on a clear day.

The tower initially closed four years ago after it was found the glass elevators were too heavy, causing the mechanism to overheat, while one of the ball bearings which took the weight of the whole structure had sunk.

These have now been replaced with much lighter lift cars, and a new safety feature which causes the lifts to "cut out" and return to the ground if the wind goes above 20mph should hopefully mean that no-one will get stuck up the tower again.

The ball bearings, which were previously described as "not fit for purpose", have also been replaced.

View from tower
Interactive display
View from tower
Map
View from tower

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