Elevator to make Fat Margaret first wheelchair-accessible Old Town tower

Renovation work underway at Fat Margaret Tower in Tallinn.
Renovation work underway at Fat Margaret Tower in Tallinn. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

Extensive renovations by the Estonian Maritime Museum underway at Fat Margaret Tower (Paks Margareeta) in Tallinn's medieval Old Town have reached the elevator installation stage, making the 16th century artillery tower Tallinn first to be fitted with an elevator.

"We have planned not just a family-friendly but also a fully accessible permanent exhibition in Fat Margaret Tower," said Estonian Maritime Museum director Urmas Dresen, noting that the installation of an elevator in a medieval tower has been an extraordinary case in both heritage conservation and construction terms.

"Together with wheelchair ramps, we will be able to make this structure under heritage protection nearly 90 percent accessible to visitors in wheelchairs," Dresen highlighted.

Increasing accessibility at the museum will go beyond that, however. 

"Guide lines for those with visual impairments, tactile floor plans, audio tours with audio descriptions, a hearing aid-compatible sound system, videos featuring sign language interpretations, and hands-on solutions with simple explanations of complex phenomenon are some examples," the director said.

After nearly two years of renovations, the fully revamped Fat Margaret Tower is scheduled to reopen to the public at the end of this year.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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