When you visit Utrecht you will notice the Domtoren almost immediately. The 14th century tower is the heart of the old city centre and for most visitors their visit to Utrecht starts here.
The Domtoren is in need of restoration work and maintenance on the exterior so in 2017 the first part of the scaffolding was raised around the top part of the tower and more work will be done in the upcoming years.
The Domtoren is open for visitors as normal. No work will be done on the inside of the tower so you can visit the chapels and belfry. When you come outside on the galleries at 70 meters and 95 meters you will see some scaffolding but the view is unchanged and as impressive as always. And you get the unique opportunity to see the work up close!
The Dom Tower is more than 600 years old and wind, rain, sun and frost damage the exterior. It is important to repair damages as soon as possible. Every historic building is in need of extencive restoration work every 20-40 years, even when the daily maintenance is exellent. Natural stone wears out and grout slowly dissolves over the years. The daily maintenance over the last decades was sufficient but heavy maintenance it necessary to make sure the tower is in top condition for the upcoming decades. A maintenance cycle necessary to preserve the Dom Tower for future generations
The first restoration was between 1519 and 1525. Utrecht had a disastrous year in 1672 and a terrible storm in 1674 which brought so much damage to the city and its economy that the city funds weren't enough to maintain the Dom Tower. Slowly the tower started to fall into disrepair. In 1833 it almost collapsed due to the poor maintenance. A new restoration to save the tower took place in 1837-1845 followed by another even more extensive restoration from 1901 until 1932. The last restoration was in 1975.
Restoration 2019-2024 and guided tours
The restoration started in 2019 and the prognosis is that it will be finished in 2024. The restoration focusses on the exterior of the tower. The team starts at the top and wil slowly make its way to ground level. No work will be done on the inside because the interior is in good condition.
The tower is open for visitors during the entire restoration. A unique chance because you will see the restoration up close and you climb to 100 meters instead of 95, higher than ever!