42 years ago today, Toronto's iconic CN Tower opened as the world’s tallest freestanding structure, a title it held for 32 years. It's now the third tallest freestanding structure in the world, and the remains the tallest in the western hemisphere. Now, the CN Tower is celebrating the completion of a major $16 million renovation. Exactly one year since a new set of floor-to-ceiling windows was unveiled on the 346-metre-high (1,136 ft) observation deck, the tower has unveiled additional floor-to-ceiling glass viewing areas that improve accessibility, a new glass floor, new food service areas, and a revised layout that allows for 360 degrees of views of the city.

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands Company, Cumulus ArchitectsNew glazing for the CN Tower's main observation deck, image by Jack Landau

This morning, Spadina-Fort York MP Adam Vaughan was joined by John McBain, President and CEO of Canada Lands Company, and Neil Jones, Chief Operating Officer at the CN Tower, to celebrate the occasion.

Neil Jones, Chief Operating Officer at the CN Tower, TorontoNeil Jones, Chief Operating Officer at the CN Tower, addresses the the audience, image by Craig White

Following some brief remarks from the three, a ceremonial ribbon cutting—including children from Variety Village—officially opened the upgraded observation deck.

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands CompanyRibbon cutting for the new CN Tower upgrades, image by Jack Landau

The three new viewing areas were installed in phases from October 2017 to June 2018. 28 glazing units—each panel weighing 448 kg (998 lbs)—were added to the first 14 panes to be installed, and now stretch across 67.68 metres of the main observation deck. The new glazing allows for more open views than the original configuration, with windows starting from 8 cm off the floor, and allowing persons with mobility challenges—or young children—to experience the city views without having to be lifted. 

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands Company, Cumulus ArchitectsAdam Vaughan and a local child show off the newly accessible windows, image by Jack Landau

While the sights are quite familiar to most locals, the new CN Tower Viewfinder app provides visitors who may be newer to the city with an interactive tool to explore their surroundings from high above. You can learn more about this cool new feature by checking out an article covering the app.

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands Company, Cumulus ArchitectsNeil Jones, Chief Operating Officer at the CN Tower introducing the new app, image by Jack Landau

One level below indoor observation, the outdoor observation level has had section of glass floor since 1994. Now, the indoor observation level has a 23 m2 (247 ft2) glass floor section directly above it, consisting of 8 panels of composite glass, each consisting of 5 panes of clear tempered glass, and 1 mirror pane on the bottom, giving it a one-way glass underside to preserve the modesty of those on the upper level. The floor is capable of supporting over 11,204 kg (24,700 lbs.), the equivalent weight of 18 moose. No moose were spotted at the opening.

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands Company, Cumulus ArchitectsNew glass floor with the old glass floor visible one level below, image by Jack Landau

The removal of the former Horizons restaurant has freed up the east side of the main observation deck, allowing guests to walk a full circle around the deck and enjoy views of the emerging South Core area. A reimagined, sleek interior design by Cumulus Architects replaces the deck's previous dated look. Guests can still grab a bite to eat on the main deck, with new food and beverage areas integrated into the design.

CN Tower, Toronto, Canada Lands Company, Cumulus ArchitectsNew food and beverage area, image by Jack Landau

Additional information about previous CN Tower upgrades can be found in the project's database file, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum thread, or leave a comment using the field provided at the bottom of this page.