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High Council Tower

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The High Council Tower was a tall spire that housed the meeting place of the Jedi High Council on Coruscant. Over the Council's history, the Tower has existed in many different incarnations.[1] The most recognizable Tower was located atop the southwestern side of the Jedi Temple surrounding Tranquillity Spire.[7] Fully rebuilt circa 1019 BBY, the Tower was abandoned in 19 BBY and later collapsed during the Galactic Civil War.[13] An exact replica would be constructed for the New Jedi Order circa 35 ABY.[3]

HistoryEdit

Old RepublicEdit

Old Jedi High Council Tower
The Tower as it stood during the Mandalorian Wars.

Over the long history of the Jedi Order and their presence on Coruscant, the exact meeting place of the High Council has changed over the many millennia. When the Four Masters began building a temple around the Sacred Spire, the Order established a base of operations for the Council in a broad plaza. A narrow tower with a wide base, the Order used this Tower as a store house for Sith artifacts confiscated after the Great Sith War. During the Mandalorian Wars, the High Council was notified of a schismatic sect within the Order. Using this information, the High Council led an attack on the Draay Estate, ground zero for the heretic Jedi, leaving the Tower lightly defended. While the Council was attacking the estate Haazen, the mastermind behind the Covenant, ordered his agents within the Tower to take control of the Sith artifacts stored within. Killing fellow Jedi, the artifacts were secured by the Covenant Jedi; however, Haazen was killed during the battle and the High Council returned to prevent the theft by the misguided Jedi at the Tower.[14]

Only a few years later the Council had moved to new Council Chamber, located at the base of a tall spire. In 3954 BBY the Sith Triumvirate revealed itself and began a Jedi Purge, forcing the Order to abandon this Council Tower indefinitely.[15] With the reoccupation of Coruscant by the Order, they occupied the Temple as it expanded to greater heights. As of 3653 BBY the Council occupied one of four spires located atop the Temple Ziggurat. However, this tower would collapse during the resurgent Sith Empire's attack on the capital.[4]

SackingJediTemple-Deceived
The High Council Tower collapses during the Sith onslaught.

It wasn't until the expansion of 1019 BBY that the Council and the Galactic Senate had raised enough money to reconstruct the Tower atop the Temple complex. The Tower would stand for nearly a millennium, with expansions and remodeling of the interior happening every once in a while. In 34 BBY a group of Yinchorri, hired by the mysterious Darth Sidious, led an attack on the Tower. Infiltrating the atrium of the Tower, the Yinchorri were repelled by the Jedi present in the Temple, causing little damage to the interior of the structure.[16] Following the Invasion of Naboo in 32 BBY the Tower hangars were remodeled and updated, housing new personal starfighters for use by individual Jedi.[2]

At the outbreak of the Clone Wars the Tower served as the headquarters for the Order's war operations, with Jedi Command constantly updating the Office of the Supreme Chancellor and the High Council on Separatist movements. At the conclusion of the war, the elusive Dark Lord of the Sith, Darth Sidious, was discovered to be no other than Supreme Chancellor Palpatine of the Galactic Republic. Known only to the High Council, four of the greatest swords masters of the Order went to arrest the Sith and failed. Though the Temple was on high alert, the small number of fully trained Jedi there was no match for the overwhelming number of the 501st Legion of the Grand Army of the Republic. As Operation: Knightfall was carried out, the Temple was purged of all its occupants. As the fighting was still going strong, the Council Tower was visited by a concerned Bail Organa, Galactic Senator of Alderaan. After being turned away by clone troopers stationed on the hangar landing platform, Organa watched in horror as Padawan Zett Jukassa was slaughtered by the troops.[5]

Ruinsoftowers
The Tower, as viewed by Starkiller from the Tower of First Knowledge.

Following the disbanding of the Order, the Tower would stand in silence, its halls abandoned and its superstructure crumbling. Though illegal to enter and strictly guarded by Imperial Senate Sentinels ex-Jedi Ferus Olin managed to force his way through a boarded-up breakfast room window and make it to the base of the Tower. Olin met Darth Vader here in the atrium and proceeded to duel the Sith Lord as they made their way to the Council Chambers. Olin managed to escape the Sith's wrath by dropping through a hole in the floor, landing in the map room several stories below.[10]

In 2 BBY, during the Sith assassin Starkiller's third mission to the Temple, the assassin entered into a chamber at the base of the Tower with a turbolift lobby. Taking the lift to the summit of the Tower he proceeded into the ruined chamber after cutting his way through countless Shadow Troopers. The malfunctioning Jedi Trials program activated as Starkiller entered the room, using the Council Chamber's holoprojectors to create a simulacrum of dead Jedi named Kento Marek. Battling the simulated Jedi, Starkiller defeated the simulacrum and left the chamber in increased distress.[17]

The Temple would survive for much of the Galactic Civil War, the Council Tower leering over the surface of Coruscant for years. The ancient edifice was even re-inhabited briefly, as members of the new Jedi Order searched the destroyed hall for any information on the teachings of the old Order.[12] It wasn't until several years later that the five towers of the Temple collapsed, the Council Tower completely destroyed. The new Order would clear the rubble away and erect a small praxeum in its place on the roof of the Ziggurat;[18] though this too would be lost during the Yuuzhan Vong War.[19]

ReconstructionEdit

NewTempleOnCoruscant
The Tower is rebuilt in the new Jedi Temple; though it is concealed behind the tinted transparisteel pyramid.

Following the retaking of Coruscant by the Galactic Alliance, Chief of State Cal Omas donated a new Temple to the Order in recognition of the Jedi's efforts during the war. Using blueprints salvaged from the old Jedi Archives the Reconstruction Authority erected the new Temple to near-exact specifications; though a new transparisteel pyramid concealed the restored Council Tower. In 43 ABY, Interim Grand Master Kenth Hamner reflected on this architectural choice and wondered why those who built the Temple couldn't stay with a design that had worked for centuries.[3]

LayoutEdit

The ancient Tower that housed the chambers of the High Council stood the test of time over the Order's long history, standing high Over Coruscant for nearly a century. The masonry of the spire was supported by a highly-tensile substance known as magnate, which aided in the support of the thin frame of the Tower. Also, the permem incorporated into the Council Chamber’s windows aided in maintaining a constant gravity balance, along with keeping the artificial air supply operational at such altitude. The turbolift that led to the Council Chamber was crafted by great Jedi architects, who incorporated Force-inspired, internal dynamics, which allowed for the different sizes and shapes of the Order’s members to ascend the narrow spire.[2]

Jedi Council Tower balcony
Master Qui-Gon Jinn and his Padawan, Obi-Wan Kenobi make use of a Contemplation Station.

Crowning each of the Temple spires were reception/transmission antennas which, along with a constant connection to the HoloNet, tapped into the cosmic energy fields of the galaxy itself in order to stay in contact with Jedi on far-flung planets. The central topmast of this unique array was a powerful multi-frequency eradicator/scrambler that when coupled with the eradicators incorporated into the Tower’s frame scrambled all communications in and out of the Temple. Communication bundles in the wall cavities fed data from these masts, through the columns within the Council Chamber, to the Operations Planning Center. Receiver vanes within the walls of the spire converted signals from hyperspace locations into real-space coordinates before displaying them on the holomap in the central pit of the Planning Center. From here, the location of Jedi stationed anywhere in the galaxy could be pinpointed, and disturbances in the Force or high concentrations of Force energy were displayed on the map by Jedi Command. The Operations Planning Center gave access to the three Contemplation Stations outside [2]

At the base of each Tower was a reception hall that allowed rooftop access to and from the Temple. Two large bronzium statues flanked the entrance; their lightsabers crossed over the entry. The hall beyond was lined with statues of the great Jedi Masters of old, leading to a bridge that spanned the central shaft that ran up the Tower; suspended in the shaft was a large stone statue of a Jedi.[17] An ancient stairway wound around the shaft, leading up into the heights of the Tower, all the way to the High Council Chamber.[10]

ITW1 Council Chamber
Cutaway of the High Council Tower.

Fifteen stories below the Council Chamber was a hangar equipped with garages below the floor and an aircraft control station in the ceiling. A retractable landing platform could be extended from the chamber's mouth out over the Temple Ziggurat for easy launches from the hangar.[11] The room was staffed by mechanics and astromech droids, as well as clone personnel during the Clone Wars.[5]

The residences of the High Council members were also located in the Tower, providing them were more private accommodations and immediate access to the Council Chamber. Located above the atrium to the Tower, the chambers were typically small and hexagonal, with meditation cushions placed in the center of the room.[11] Following the reconstruction of the Tower in 35 ABY, the Grand Master's offices were completed with a white larmalstone foyer. These offices were located below the Situation Room and above the quarters of the other Jedi Council members.[20]

Behind the scenesEdit

An inconsistency exists in some appearances of the Tower, specifically the Council Chamber. In some shots an antechamber lies beyond the doors to the chamber; which does not comply with the tower's cylindrical shape.

AppearancesEdit

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

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