Clock Tower, Symbol of İzmir
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The Izmir Clock Tower, a landmark in Konak Square, was built in 1901 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Sultan Abdulhamid II’s reign. It was commissioned by the council made up of the city’s then-Governor, Cypriot native Kamil Pasha; the navy’s then-Major General Said Pasha; and the mayor, a man whose surname means “Esref” in Turkish. There are four stories and an octagonal shape to this building, which makes it 25 meters tall.
The platform is constructed of white marble, while the other buildings are made of chiseled stone. The columns are decorated with a North African motif. It was German Emperor Wilhelm II who donated the tower’s clock. Lozenge reliefs adorn the exterior of the Clock Tower, which now houses four clocks measuring 75 cm in diameter.
One of the places where people from Izmir hang out. From there, you can walk to Kemeralti (a market), Kızlarağası Hanı (an inn), and Asansör (also on foot) (historical elevator).
The Clock of the Izmir Clock Tower
The clock on the Izmir Clock Tower can be seen from all four sides of the tower. However, there is actually only “one” clock on the tower, which is not visible from the outside. It is placed on iron angles and cast feet and consists of a main machine with 22 gears, some of which bear the date 1901.
Although it is said that the clock was a gift from German Emperor II. Wilhelm, Dr. Sabri Yetkin, the author of the 2001 research article “The Birth of an Urban Symbol: The Izmir Clock Tower”, could not find this information in original sources.
The maintenance, installation, and repair of the clock are entrusted to Feti Pamukoğlu, a member of the Pamukoğlu family from Izmir, who has been practicing the craft of clockmaking for three generations!
Every six days, Feti climbs 66 steps to the floor where the clock machine is located to wind the clock and perform maintenance.
The winding process is carried out by the manual turning of gears, which lifts a weight of 70 kg attached to a steel cable 14 meters up. The clock works as the weight falls every six days.
If the clock stops or malfunctions, there is a fine of 100 TL per day. Apart from a few old incidents and the earthquakes of 1974, this clock has never stopped working to this day.
Other Clock Towers in Izmir
Alsancak Train Station: The tower on the Alsancak Train Station, which opened in 1858, was built in 1890. Its bell was imported from London.
NATO: The tower in Buca, Şirinyer, was built in 1913 along with the American Male High School.
The tower, which was part of the school until 1934, is less known to new generations of Izmir locals as the land was transferred to NATO in 1952.
Bayramyeri: The clock tower on the Old Bayramyeri building is the newest clock tower in the city. The tower, which is 14.5 meters high, single machined, and has four faces, was built in 1955, and the clock was installed in 1957. Its architect was Harbi Hotan.
Fair: The Fair Clock Tower in Kültürpark, where the Izmir International Fair is held, was built by Harbi Hotan in 1938. It is located on the structure known as the former Pakistan pavilion, which is entered through the Lozan gate of the Kültürpark.
İzmir Archeological Museum and Kadifekale are also near clock tower.
At Konak Pier Shopping Mall, there are a lot of stores to satisfy your inner shopper. When you’re hungry, take a break and refuel at one of the popular restaurants. You can go there by walk about 5 min.
By walk, you can reach Konak Ferry Pier. Konak Ferry Pier is a ferry pier in Izmir that provides urban transportation. Click here to see the Ferry times.