Perhaps the most iconic City of Toronto landmark is Canada’s National Tower. In the beginning, the tower was referred to as the Canadian National Tower and was named after its builders, the Canadian National rail company. In 1995 the ownership was transferred over to the Canada Lands Company, and now both of the titles “Canada’s National Tower” or the “Canadian National Tower” are acceptable. Commonly, the structure is referred to as the CN Tower and it is currently the tallest freestanding structure in the Americas. Due to many other tall buildings currently under construction that are set to be completed in the next couple of years, the CN Tower will not likely hold this title for much longer.
Construction on the tower lasted from 1973 to 1976 and it stands at 1,815.4 feet tall, or 147 storeys. One of the major contributing factors that led to the need for the construction of the tower was that the large boom in the 1960s and 1970′s had resulted in many tall buildings being built in the downtown Toronto area. Broadcasting into the downtown core was difficult, and a large tower would have to be created that stood taller than these sky scrapers. Currently, television stations, FM radio stations, communications and cell phone companies use the CN tower for broadcasting.
The coloured LED lights on the tower change periodically depending on what’s going on in the city. To commemorate holidays or sporting victories, the lights may change to reflect the colours of the season or the winning team. When the lights are off or are very dimly lit in the spring and fall, it’s to ensure that no birds are killed due to hitting the tower during their migratory seasons.
The CN tower contains six elevators that take visitors up to the Sky Pod, the ball at the top of the tower. The Sky Pod contains a restaurant, an observation area and a glass floor.