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Leaning Tower of Pisa Reopened – Dale’s Daily Data

Leaning Tower of Pisa and cathedral (Getty Images)

It took 11 years and $27 million to fix it and when they were done it was still crooked, but they wanted it that way. It’s one of the world’s most famous tourist attractions – one of the most photographed buildings in the world and if they completely fixed it there really wouldn’t be much of a point in taking a picture of it. And they’d have to change the name of it too.

The world-famous Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy was in danger of completely falling over back in the late 1980’s, so in 1990 the tower was closed and work began to save it. Engineers have always said it’s a miracle it didn’t fall down in the hundreds of years since it was first built.

It’s actually the bell tower of an adjoining cathedral, but even as it was being built it started to lean because of the soft, sandy soil. So builders tried to compensate for the lean by making the other side a little bit taller – kind of a teeter totter effect. That made it only worse because of the extra weight.

Before renovations began it was leaning 15 feet off perpendicular. The project was able to reduce the lean by about 17 inches and engineers say it’ll be another 300 years before it leans that badly again. So they took away some of the lean, but not all of it. Tourists can still climb the tower, but only on guided tours now.

It was on this date in 2001 that the Leaning Tower of Pisa was open to visitors once again.

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