Renovations and upgrading of the Campanile, one of Port Elizabeth’s most visible skyline and audible heritage landmarks, has been completed and is now open to visitors to the Friendly City.
The newly renovated heritage site was unveiled on Tuesday, 15 August 2017. The Campanile Memorial has a climb of 204 steps that takes you to the Observation Room, offering a magnificent view of the harbour and surroundings, more than 52 metres above the city, and it contains the largest carillon of bells in the country in addition to its chiming clock. Some of the new features of the Campanile include an interactive visual-technology array dubbed ‘Ghost Bells’ – bell proxies installed under the actual bell carillon which visually light up during chiming or when visitors press keys of an interactive silver console to match the pitch of a key with the corresponding bell.
Another addition includes the harbour viewing window – an observation deck capsule at the top of the 50m Campanile memorial, suspending visitors in the sky when they overlook the Port Elizabeth harbour. A new reception area has been developed that will act as an information desk and several exhibition areas within the Campanile for the city’s creative communities. Other features such as a silver plaque on the 67th step of the 204 steps spiralling staircase to acknowledge Nelson Mandela’s 67 years in service of democracy, had also been included as a new feature of the building.
All of these new features offer a welcoming start to the city’s iconic Route 67 – a public art urban meander dedicated to Nelson Mandela, which has its starting point at the Campanile. Normal opening times are Tuesdays to Saturdays from 09h00 till 12h30 and 13h30 till 17h00. On Sundays, opening times are from 14h00 till 17h00 (closed on Mondays). For more information on the Campanile, visit the website of the Mandela Bay Development Agency.
Watch a YouTube documentary on Campanile Renovations.
Source: MDBA. Images: Meropa