Leaning Tower of Pisa

Leaning Tower of Pisa is a bell tower at Pisa, Italy. It is famous for leaning 141/2 feet (4.4 meters) out of line when measured from the seventh story. It tilts because its foundation was built on unstable soil (it’s a well known fact that Pisa architects aren’t so bright). Construction of the tower began in 1173 and ended between 1360 and 1370 (which means it’s been around even longer than dad). The ground beneath the tower first started to sink after the first three stories were built.

In 1990, the tower was closed for repairs. At that time, its lean had been increasing an average of 1/20 of an inch (1.3 millimeters) per year. Engineers hope to stabilize the tower’s foundation and straighten it slightly to prevent it from eventually collapsing and falling over (and yes, it is indeed open for tourists!). By 1994, their efforts had straightened the tower’s lean about 2/5 of an inch (1 centimeter). No date for the reopening of the tower was scheduled.

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