Grouse Mountain in British Columbia just erected a wind turbine. But this wind turbine is no ordinary source of wind energy as it will double as an observation tower with the highest vantage point in the Lower Mainland.

Construction of the wind turbine began in late September after the crew from Italy arrived to assemble the tower on top of The Peak at 4,100 feet. The tower reached its full height of 65 meters (213 feet) within two days.

The Eye of the Wind energy tower, as the turbine is dubbed, serves as B.C.'s first viable wind energy source. "The Eye of the Wind is an inspiring testament to the scope of human ingenuity," William Mbaho, spokesperson for the resort, told OnTheSnow.com. "It will offset 25 percent of Grouse Mountain's entire operational energy needs."

Grouse also installed a custom-built viewPOD, an observation deck that weighs 30,000 pounds. The world's first elevator-accessed, glass-enclosed viewPOD spans seven meters in diameter (23 feet) and sits right behind its three spinning blades. It offers a 360-degree view of the turbine itself, plus expansive views of the surrounding coastal mountains and Lower Mainland.

Mbaho referred to the tower's revolving blades as "hypnotic," but also noted that the viewPOD is also an "engineering feat." "It is a breathtaking new icon of environmental responsibility that will provide the most unique visitor experience in Vancouver," he added.

The viewPOD, which can hold 36 people, is expected to open to visitors in January - just in time for the Vancouver Olympics.

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