The new glass floor is the latest attraction at the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Glassolutions has supplied the first level of the tower, with a floor made of LITE-FLOOR XTRA GRIP anti-skid glass tiles. Located 57 meters above the ground, this space provides visitors with a double attraction: an exceptional view of the city and of the Tower itself.
More than 250 million people have visited the Eiffel Tower, the world renowned symbol of France, since it first opened 125 years ago. The French architect, Alain Moatti, was in charge of the project to restore the 5,400 m² area of the first floor of the tower. The purpose was to bring a new perspective on the city, in which they transformed the previously unnoticed floor into one of the most spectacular and best attractions Paris now has to offer. This goal was achieved by introducing a glass balustrade around the central opening of the tower and adding a glass floor right next to it, giving an extraordinary view of the city below and also the tower itself.
For the construction of the 130 m² walkable glass surface, Glassolutions developed the product LITE-FLOOR XTRA GRIP anti-skid glass tiles manufactured by Eckelt Glas plant in Austria. The goal was to achieve maximum transparency through the glass whilst not compromising the required slip-resistance aspect of the floor.
Glassolutions Eckelt from Austria, specialized in glass transformation for large architectural projects worldwide, produced 64 geometrically different glass panels. The 32 mm thick LITE-FLOOR glass sheets are comprised of 3-layer laminated safety glass with structurally enhancing interlayers. Each glass element is able to withstand loads of up to 500 kg/m² and provide the greatest level of safety for the visiting masses. The specially developed screenprint XTRA GRIP ensures sufficient protection and slip-resistance. The high level of quality in the print on the LITE-FLOOR XTRA GRIP glass elements combines the exceptional mechanical and aesthetic characteristics of the new product.
"I opted to remain within the geometry of the original work, while extending it through the bias of a contemporary reading."
The renovation of the first floor took about two years and included also a completely refurbishing the retail and restaurant as well as a museum honouring the original designer Gustave Eiffel. With solar cells and wind wheels to generate power, the first floor is a great example of ecological design. Before the renovation, many tourists were only interested in going up to the highest platform close to the top of the tower. The vertiginous experience of the glass floor richly increases the attraction of the first level now bringing many more visitors to see what it is like.