The Leaning Tower of Pisa is straightening itself out
The leaning Tower of Pisa has lost about 1.5 inches of its tilt over the past two decades, according to experts.
PISA, ITALY — The Tower of Pisa may be known for its distinctive tilt, but recent years have seen it becoming slightly more upright.
The BBC reports that the Tower of Pisa was constructed on a layer of clay and sand that was softer to the south, and began to tilt by the time the third storey was being built.
To compensate for this, the next five levels were constructed with one side shorter than the other, resulting in a structure that is not only tilting, but is also curved.
By 1990, the marble tower was leaning six degrees, or 13 feet, according to CNN. Officials feared it might topple over and closed it to the public for corrective work.
Cables were attached to the third storey to stabilize the tower. Counterweights and braces were added while soil was removed from the north side to allow it to straighten out.
Experts say the Tower of Pisa is now stable, and has lost 1.5 inches of its tilt over the past 17 years, from its reopening in 2001 to the present.
CBS reports that at its current pace, it may take another thousand years for the tower to straighten out completely. So tourists and Instagrammers shouldn't worry - the famous leaning landmark will still be available for photo-ops for a good long while.
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