Construction was started in 438 BC, with the intended overall design of the building being quite original, extending on five different levels due to the sloping site of the construction.
The initial plan was based on a synthesis of five different masses on a symmetrical plan built around intersecting axes but was not fully materialised because construction was halted before full completion.
This temple was built on sloping ground on the south side of the Acropolis with the purpose to be used as its main gate, thus the name of the structure (Pro-Pylaia -"Front Gate").
This temple was built in Doric style and incorporated many innovations with regards to its original design, although its architect Mnesicles proceeded to many modifications of the original plans for various reasons during construction.
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