The Spalen Gate is the most imposing of the three surviving city gates that formed part of the fortifications in the 1400s. Many important supply goods for the city, coming from the Alsace region, passed through this gate.
The St. Alban-Tor is a remnant of the last and most extensive of Basel's city fortifications (1400). While passing through the gate, in addition to the massive wooden door, one can also see the heavy posts that could be lowered to block the entrance to the city in times of danger.
The St. Johanns-Tor was built after 1356. It was formerly a part of the third mediaval ring of fortifications that was constructed round the whole city shortly after the great earthquake of 1356.
The St. Johanns sunurb, which until then was enclosed by walls of its own, was thus incorporated into the city area. The outer ring of walls provided space for some 20,000 inhabitants, which sufficed for the population of Basel for 450 years. The city wall and moat extended from the St. Johanns-Tor down to the Rhine.