200 years The leaning tower of Pisa is the cathedral's freestanding bell tower in the Italian city of Pisa. The 56-metre structure, famous for its unexpected tilt, took over 200 years to build. Work began in 1173, and five years later it began to tilt. It continued to lean for almost a century after that, but now stands completely straight again.
The tower was built as part of an effort to establish a European trade center with China. At the time, Pisa was one of the most advanced cities in the world; it had museums, libraries, and even its own university. But the project was abandoned when traders from Genoa arrived with cheaper goods. Today, only small signs indicate where the foundations are hidden under modern-day Piazza dei Miracoli.
The tower's architect was Arnolfo di Cambio, who also designed the Duomo in Florence. He may have been inspired by the Chinese towers he saw during a trip there. Either way, he succeeded in creating a unique design with both European and Asian influences.
The tower's unusual tilt is caused by water being pumped into empty space below the building's floor. This creates enough pressure to make the floor expand, which in turn causes the tower to lean towards the west (the direction away from Pisa).
According to experts, the renowned tower of Pisa will continue to tilt for at least another 200 years. It may even remain erect, or almost so, indefinitely. Several ill-advised construction projects hastened the Leaning Tower's very gradual collapse throughout the ages; it inclined 5.5 degrees, its most acute angle ever, in 1990.
The foundation upon which the tower is built consists of large cylindrical stones set into a deep bed of sand. Over time, this has caused the bottom corners of these stones to lean inwards.
In 1363, the tower was repaired by adding large new stones to its base. In 1564, the tower was again repaired when engineers attached thick horizontal beams to the top of the monument to provide extra support. These were replaced by metal rods and wires about 80 years later but they too were eventually removed.
In 1876, engineer Vittorio Emanuele Orlando designed a new system of reinforcement for the base of the tower. This consisted of large hollow cylinders filled with concrete that still stand today as an indication of how well they worked. A similar system had already been used on another famous Italian building, Milan's Duomo, and it has been suggested that it was inspired by the Leaning Tower.
In 1989, scientists carried out extensive tests on the base of the tower using laser sensors. They found that it continues to tilt even after rainstorms or high winds.
The 80-meter-high (262-foot) Zaragoza Leaning Tower swayed to one side almost immediately after it was erected in 1504. The tilt is said to be the result of hasty construction and reduced tower quality. Nonetheless, the popularity of the Leaning Tower of Zaragoza surpassed that of the Tower of Pisa. The tilt grew worse over time.
The height of the Leaning Tower of Pisa is 55.86 m (low side) or 56.67 m (high side). The Leaning Tower of Pisa, also known as the Bell Tower of Pisa or the Tower of Pisa, is a bell tower in the Italian town of Pisa. In addition, the tower is a famous destination for travelers from all over the world.
The tower, which is located behind Pisa Cathedral, is the third-oldest structure in the city's Cathedral Square (Piazza del Duomo), behind the cathedral and the Pisa Baptistry.
|Leaning Tower of Pisa|
|Height (max)||55.86 metres (183.3 ft)|
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is a structure located in Pisa, Italy. It's a bell tower... Fun facts about the Leaning Tower of Pisa for youngsters.
|Quick facts for kids Leaning Tower of Pisa|
Approximately a 10 degree angle The Tower of Pisa is 60 meters tall and leans at a 10 degree inclination till 1990. Despite being meant to be exactly vertical, it began to tilt during construction. The cause is not clear but may have been due to soil instability beneath the foundation.
The tower has been called Europe's tallest building site safety hazard because the structure is so close to stability. Any slight increase or decrease in weight will change its angle of lean.
Construction on the Tower of Pisa started in 1106 under its original name of "Prestige". It was designed by Guiniforte (or Giovanni da Fontignano), who also designed the cathedral. The tower was built out of stone extracted from the local area. It had been planned for several years before it actually started and money was collected throughout Italy. Work stopped in 1363 when funds ran out. In 1564, after many attempts to raise more money, the city government offered prizes for any person who could make the tower stand completely upright. They paid 100 gold coins for each day the job remained unfinished.
In 1884, after over 700 years, the first section of the base was finished and the total cost was estimated at about $1 million.