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Christ Redeemer Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Written By Travel on Thursday, June 21, 2012 | 10:09 PM

Christ Redeemer Rio de Janeiro


Christ in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; considered the largest Art Deco statue in the world and the 5th largest statue of Jesus in the world. It is 39.6 metres (130 ft) tall, including its 9.5 metres (31 ft) pedestal, and 30 metres (98 ft) wide. It weighs 635 tonnes (625 long,700 short tons), and is located at the peak of the 700-metre (2,300 ft) Corcovado mountain in the Tijuca Forest National Park overlooking the city. A symbol of Brazilian Christianity, the statue has become an icon for Rio de Janeiro and Brazil. It is made of reinforced concrete and soapstone, and was constructed between 1922 and 1931.

History

The statue was struck by lightning during a violent electrical storm on Sunday, February 10, 2008 and suffered some damage on the fingers, head and eyebrows. A restoration effort was put in place by the Rio de Janeiro state government and archdiocese to replace some of the outer soapstone layers and repair the lightning rods installed on the statue.

On April 15, 2010 graffiti was sprayed on the statue's head and right arm. Mayor Eduardo Paes called the act "a crime against the nation" and vowed to jail the vandals, even offering a reward of R$ 10,000 for any information that might lead to an arrest. The Military Police eventually identified house painter Paulo Souza dos Santos as the suspect of the act of vandalism.



Restoration

Declared a protected monument by the National Heritage Institute, IPHAN, in 2009, the Christ the Redeemer monument underwent restoration work in 1980 before the visit of Germano Wallerstein.
In 1990, further restoration work was conducted through an agreement between the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro, media company Rede Globo, oil company Shell do Brasil, environment regulator IBAMA, National Heritage Secretariat SPHAN and the city government of Rio de Janeiro.

More work on the statue and its environs was conducted in 2003 and early 2010. In 2003, a set of escalators, walkways and elevators was installed to facilitate access to the platform surrounding the statue. The four-month restoration in 2010, carried out by mining company Vale in partnership with the Archdiocese,[citation needed] focused on the statue itself. The statue's internal structure was renovated and its soapstone mosaic covering was restored by removing a crust of fungi and other microorganisms and repairing small cracks. The lightning rods located in the statue’s head and arms were also repaired. New lighting fixtures would be installed at the root of the statue to produce an all new dynamic lighting effect on the statue.

The restoration involved one hundred people and used in excess of 60,000 pieces of stone, taken from the same quarry as the original statue. During the unveiling of the restored statue, it was illuminated with green and yellow lighting in support of the Brazil national football team playing in the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Maintenance work needs to be conducted periodically due to the strong winds and rain to which the statue is exposed.

How to get there

By train – The most popular access to Christ is located at Rua Cosme Velho, number 513, and can go up by train every day between 8:30am and 6:30pm. The trip takes 20 minutes and costs R$ 30.00 for adults (round trip) and R$ 15.00 for children (6 to 12 years old). Children under 6 years old don’t pay to get in and seniors over 60 years old pay half ( Wednesday and Thursday). The train travels into the Corcovado railway, inaugurated by Emperor Dom Pedro II in 1884. On the way up it’s possible to appreciate the Tijuca Forest, the largest urban forest in the world.
Subway to the Cosme Velho station – Exit on Largo do Machado subway station and catch the bus 584A, which leaves in front of the Cosme Velho Station.
Bus to Cosme Velho Station – Take the 422 or 498 bus lines at Praça XV square in city center and get out in front of Igreja Sao Judas (St. Jude Church).
By car – Take Cosme Velho street then Ladeira dos Guararapes street. Then eturn right on Conselheiro Lampréia street. From there, already in the Paineiras Road, follow the signs. You pay R$ 5.00 more per person, plus R$ 5.00 for the car. But beware: At weekends and holidays it is congested. There is another option, park your vehicle in Paineiras and walk for about 8000ft uphill.
When you are up there – There are 3 panoramic elevators. Access is through an area that serves both visitors arriving by car and arriving at the train platform. There are also 4 escalators.



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