The center of the TV Tower was marked in the plot of land and the excavation works started. The place of the TV Tower was chosen on the hill of Karoliniškės, because it is 60 m higher than the Old Town of Vilnius located on the left bank of Neris. Prior to building the Tower, a huge pit was dug and about 20 thousand tons of concrete was poured. The stability of the Tower’s engineering structure is based on the fact, that in the bottom, the Tower is connected with a huge concrete rock.
The foundation of the Tower is 38 m in diameter, shaped as a circle, 11 500 tones in mass, 8.25 m in depth with 1.5 m thick hearth. The diameter of the ferro concrete part of the Tower in the bottom is 15 m, in the top - 8 m. The non-stressed ferro concrete structure is similar to the one of TV Tower of Berlin was chosen.
he concrete works of the stem was started. When the works were underway, the bottom elevator shafts were installed, the metal parts prepared and painted; the upper part of the stem mounted, the cup of the Tower constructed; the metal framework assembled on the ground, near the Tower.
Within 1 hr. 30 min., 100 tones spatial structure was lifted. On 22 March, the first sheet of the bottom part of the cup weighing 25 tons was fixed at the height of 160 meters. Concrete works on them were performed at the foot of the Tower on a special stock and raised up to the designed height. The walls of the upper structure were insulated and covered with copper sheets.
The turning floor on the upper building was manufactured at the radio components factory in Vilnius. In total, 30 unique metal structures were manufactured for the TV Tower.
Hardware room was installed in the ferro concrete part of the Tower, therein, three powerful TV and four ultra-short radio wave broadcasters were installed, as well as, radio-relay line central station. The Tower spans the area of 3,355 sq. m and the total 22 floor building with foundation weights about 25-30 thousand tons.
Prior to giving the object for exploitation, it was written in the press, that some works are late to be finished, the mounters and builders were trying to complete everything until the New Year.
TV Tower of Vilnius remembers the bloody nocturnal events of 13 January 1991, wherein 14 people were killed near the TV Tower: Loreta Asanavičiūtė, Virginijus Druskis, Darius Gerbutavičius, Rolandas Jankauskas, Rimantas Juknevičius, Alvydas Kanapinskas, Algimantas Petras Kavoliukas, Vidas Maciulevičius, Titas Masiulis, Alvydas Matulka, Apolinaras Juozas Povilaitis, Ignas Šimulionis, Vytautas Vaitkus, Vytautas Koncevičius (on the tragic night of 13 January 1991, Vytautas was guarding the gates to the TV Tower, was injured and on the month of February died from his injuries). Tanks ran over three defenders of the Tower (L. Asanavičiūtė, R. Jankauskas and A. Kavoliukas), other defenders died from various gun-shot wounds. 9 victims were buried in Vilnius Antakalnis Cemetery, others - in their hometowns. Half of the victims were younger than 25.
Small obelisks made from granite immortalize the places where the defenders fell. Nearby, trees were planted; were men fell, oaks are growing and in the place of L. Asanavičiūtė’s death - linden. The streets of Karoliniškės micro-region are named after the fallen defenders.
In 1992, on the first floor of TV Tower, an exhibition to commemorate the victims of 13 January was installed; it was renewed in 2016. Annually, on 12 January, hundreds of people gather here, near the TV Tower, in order to give respects to the memory of those that died for the freedom of Lithuania. On that day, a huge remembrance bonfire is lit, flowers are placed on the places of death, poetry is read and music is plaid.
A memorial for the remembrance of TV Tower’s defenders was unveiled. It is an 8 m height bronze sculpture called “Sacrifice” (“Aukojimas”), which was created by sculptor Darius Bražiūnas and architect Artūras Asauskas. A woman, who has her hands raised towards the sky, is standing on a huge bell. The stylized figure is somewhat raised above the ground; it is created in accordance to the cannons of statues for freedom. At the bottom of the large bell (diameter - 2.5 m), the lyrics of the hymn of Lithuania are carved-out. The bell is rung before the mass; it calls the people; it is a call, a symbol of independence. The monument was erected by the Lithuanian Radio and Television Center.
The Historic Park of Antennas
When commemorating 85th anniversary of broadcasting Lithuanian radio programs and its own activity, Lithuanian Radio and Television Center near the TV Tower of Vilnius on 13 June 2011 opened a historical park of antennas.
Four antennas remind us of the path that Lithuanian Radio and Television Center has went: antenna for broadcasting radio programs “Dozhd” (“Dožd”), radio-relay communication megaphone type parabolic antenna RPA-2P, antenna for broadcasting TV programs “Ladoga” and the APK antenna, which was used to broadcast overhead analogue television programs (the specialists call it “Butterfly” (“Peteliškė”)).
Satellite communication antenna “Nera”, which in 1991 was gifted to our country by Norwegian Radio and Television Center, stands in the park near TV Tower of Vilnius. This antenna, during the Soviet aggression, was being used in the House of Highest Council in order to ensure the communication with the whole world. On the month of January 2001, when commemorating the 20th anniversary of Lithuania’s freedom defenders, it was started to be exhibited for the populace.