A tourist attraction recently unveiled in Chicago offers visitors a new view of the city’s skyline on a tilting observation deck. The attraction, known as TILT, provides guests a unique view of downtown Chicago from the 94th floor of 360 Chicago, formerly the John Hancock Observatory, one of the tallest buildings in the United States.
The glass and steel platform was added to Chicago’s John Hancock Center as part of a multi-million dollar renovation to the observation deck and and, as the names suggests, tilts visitors forward for a unique perspective of the city’s The Magnificent Mile. Eight people at a time – each in their own bay – experience a gradual descent that leaves them facing out of a window at a 30-degree angle, about 1,000ft (304m) up, the descent lasting a little over a minute.
With just a pane of glass between people and ground, the John Hancock’s Tilt balcony is for the thrill-seeking tourists willing to live extreme sensations (Chicago Tribune reporter Steve Johnson said of his experience that at 20 degrees from vertical, “your body tells you it should be falling.”) , offering them spectacular downward facing views over the city.
The attraction took one year to develop and includes three layers of fully tempered glass and, according to engineer John Peronto, who created the platform, it’s very safe so those wary of the experience should feel at ease.
Tilt costs $5 to tourists and is thought to be the first of its kind.