Elevators Added to Jerusalem’s Tower of David

Eastern lift at the Tower of David museum; image courtesy of Kimmel Eshkolot Architects

Two elevators have been installed in Jerusalem’s Tower of David, providing access to the upper parts of the citadel along with other changes that make it easier to visit the museum, regardless of physical limitation, The Times of Israel reports. The elevators opened to the public in December. One elevator is built from glass and located outside in the inner courtyard of the citadel, not touching the ancient stones but bringing visitors from the main exhibition level of the museum to the upper levels. The other elevator is on the other side of the fortress, near the main entrance, offering access to the upper-floor galleries. It is indoors so as not to impact the façade of the Old City; however, an ancient, vaulted ceiling had to be dismantled to make room for the elevator. The floating glass elevator can be removed, if necessary, without affecting the surrounding structures. The initial plan called for three elevators, with the third taking visitors up to the citadel’s highest viewpoint, but the museum didn’t receive permission for that elevator. Instead, the museum is commissioning a 360-degree viewing tool to bring the views to those unable to access the top. The citadel’s renewal and conservation project of the Tower of David Museum will double the current area of the museum to 20,000 m2 and provide a number of additional amenities. The entire renovation is expected to be complete in 2023.

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