The Leaning Tower Of Pisa

Leaning Tower of PisaPhoto by Kenny Teo (zoompict)

In the world there are dozens of leaning buildings, but the most famous one is certainly the Tower of Pisa. Pisa is a city in Tuscany (central Italy) and is located on the river Arno. In this city past and the present are mixed because here stand remains from all eras, from the Etruscan temples, through medieval and Renaissance churches and monuments to buildings of the contemporary architecture. The tower was built in the style of Romanesque and in fact it is the bell tower of the Cathedral.

It has seven floors and church bells on each. The ground floor part is made of concrete arcade, and the upper floors have open terraces with semicircular arches and pillars whose capitals have ornaments in the shape of flowers, mythical animals and creepy faces. The entrance doors are decorated with a special engraved drawings of animals. The tower due to its interesting “problem” attracts more than a million tourists per year. The construction of this interesting building was initiated on 14 August 1173, and the tower was built for almost 200 years.

By the end of construction of the second floor in 1178, the tower began to sink and lean to the right. The building began to sink as foundations, three meters deep, were placed in poor, jagged land, which could not withstand the weight of the tower.

Bonanno Pisano, a famous architect began working on the tower. Twelve years, Bonanno was working on this project, managing to build only three floors. And, in 1185 he just disappeared, without any trace.

Soon after construction stopped, Pisa was at war with the neighboring city-states and the money for the tower was gone. After almost century has passed, and the tower did not continued to lean it was decided that works will be continued. Since the completion of the works in 1372, the tower is tilted almost four meters. In 1990 the tower was closed because it leaned too much and safety of tourists was compromised. Since it is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Europe, rescue operation started immediately and lasted over ten years.

The action was led by the architect Michele Jamiolkowski. Michele was able to return the position of the tower with his team, and the operation cost over fifty million German marks. Since 2001 tower is again open to visitors. The most leaned and yet less known building in Europe is located in the Netherlands. It is a tower Valfridus. And the famous Big Ben in London also began to lean, but experts say that if it continues to lean at this pace, it will take as many as four thousand years to beat the tower of Pisa.




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