Tsūtenkaku

observation tower
Tsūtenkaku, south side

Tsūtenkaku (通天閣, Tsūtenkaku) is a tower in Osaka, Japan. It is a well-known landmark and shows advertisements for Hitachi, Ltd. The tower is 103 meters tall. The main observation deck is 91 meters above the ground. The three characters in the name mean "Reaching Heaven Tower". It is in Shinsekai, part of Naniwa Ward. Tsūtenkaku Kanko Co., Ltd. owns the tower.

HistoryEdit

The current tower is the second tower on the site. The original tower was built in 1912. The design was based on the Eiffel Tower. The tower had an cable car that connected it to a nearby amusement park called Luna Park. The original was 64 meters tall. It was the second tallest building in Asia at that time. It quickly became one of the most popular locations in the city. Visitors came from all over.

There was a fire in 1943 which severely damaged the tower. It was not repaired. The tower was taken apart and the steel was used to make things for World War II.[1]

After the war, citizens wanted to rebuild the popular tower. A private company called Tsūtenkaku Kanko Co. Ltd. was set up for this purpose. They hired Tachu Naito to design it. He was nicknamed Japan's "Father of Towers". The new tower opened in 1956.[2]

SignsEdit

In 1957, Hitachi started putting neon sign advertisements on the tower. The ads have usually been changed every 5 or 6 years. Hitachi last changed the signs in 2006. New signs are scheduled for autumn 2011. The new signs will use LED lights, not neon. Other lights on the tower also show weather information.[3]

AccessEdit

  • JR West, Osaka Loop Line and Yamatoji Line, Shin-Imamiya Station, East Exit (10 minute walk)
  • Nankai Railway, Nankai Main Line and Koya Line, Shin-Imamiya Station, East Exit (10 minute walk)
  • Osaka Municipal Subway Sakaisuji Line (brown line), Ebisuchō Station, Exit 3 (3 minute walk)
  • Osaka Municipal Subway Midosuji Line (red line), Dobutsuen-mae Station, Exit 5 (10 minute walk)
  • Hankai Tramway, Hankai Line, Ebisucho Station (3 minute walk)

Photos of the tower todayEdit

Photos of the original towerEdit

Related pagesEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. "Tsutenkakaku". City of Osaka Recreation and Tourism Bureau. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
  2. Tegler, Gary. "Osaka's spirit in the sky". The Japan Times. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
  3. Kyodo (22 June 2011). "Tsutenkaku Tower to get LEDs". The Japan Times. Retrieved 22 June 2011.

Coordinates: 34°39′08″N 135°30′22″E / 34.65222°N 135.50611°E / 34.65222; 135.50611