You couldn't possibly visit Paris without seeing the Eiffel Tower. Even if you do not want to visit this world famous structure, you will see its top from all over Paris. The tower rises 300 meters tall (984 ft); when it was completed at the end of the 19th century it was twice as high as the Washington Monument, at the time the tallest structure in the world.
1889 World Exhibition
The Eiffel Tower was built for the World Exhibition in 1889, held in celebration of the French Revolution 1789, The Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII of England, opened the tower. Of the 700 proposals submitted in a design competition, Gustave Eiffel's was unanimously chosen. The construction was only meant to last for the duration of the Exposition, but it still stands today, despite all protests from contemporary artists who feared the construction would be the advent of structures without 'individuality' and despite the many people who feared that this huge 'object' would not fit into the architecture of Paris.
Today, there is no such aversion anymore among the Parisians, and one could not imagine Paris without the Eiffel Tower, in fact it has become the symbol of the City of Light.
The man behind the Eiffel Tower was Gustave Eiffel, known from his revolutionary bridge building techniques, as employed in the great viaduct at Garabit in 1884. These techniques would form the basis for the construction of the Eiffel Tower. He was also known for the construction of the Statue of Liberty's iron framework.
The structure took more than two years to complete. Each one of the about 12,000 iron pieces were designed
Separately to give them exactly the shape needed. All pieces were prefabricated and fit together using approx. 7 million nails. Eiffel Tower was designed and built in just two years by 132 workers and 50 engineers. The Eiffel Tower is nowadays 324 meters high with television antennas. It weights 7300 tons. The first floor of the Eiffel Tower...
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