The Venetian authorities planned and built the New Fortress on St Mark’s Hill, to the north-west of town, on the insistent requests of Corfiots for added defenses against the Ottoman Turks. Construction started in 1576. This fortress and its subordinate bastions (together representing a monumental piece of fortification engineering), combined with the Old Fortress, formed the town’s main line of defense against the Ottoman siege of 1716. The Ottomans were defeated and left the island on 11 August of that year. The armies of the Venetians and the Corfiots, under the command of Field Marshall Johann Matthias von der Schulenburg, defended not only Corfu, but also western Europe, thwarting the Ottoman plans of using Corfu as a stepping-stone for their expansion to the west. The British added new buildings in the 19th century. The New Fortress today houses the Hellenic Navy Station of Corfu, and has become a monument open to the public. It provides a beautiful panoramic view of the Old Town.