The World-Famous Leaning Tower of Pisa is actually the bell tower of the Cathedral of the Italian city of Pisa. It is located behind the cathedral and is the third oldest structure in the city’s Cathedral Square after the Cathedral and the Pisa Baptistry. When it was first built in the early 14th Century, it was not designed as a leaning tower. The ground on which it was built was too soft and could not support the weight of the tower. During this time, the construction was not yet complete. So while it was going on, the builders went underneath the structure and installed pylons to correct the tilt somewhat.
To this day, the tilt has not been fixed completely, or rather could not be fixed to the upright position without causing damage to the whole structure. It is still leaning at about a 5-degree angle but is stable enough and is generally considered safe. The tower is 55.86 meters tall on one side and 56.67 meters tall on the other side. The whole tower structures weigh about 14,000 tons.
This is yet another architectural wonder built by Italian architects which started in the 11th century. When the construction reached the 7th floor, the tilting started to happen because the ground in that area was soft. During that time, there was constant war in that area, so that construction had to be halted. It was shelved for about a century. This helped the foundation ground settle a bit, somewhat stabilizing the tower.
If construction went on according to the original schedule, the tower would have collapsed due to the heavy weight of the tower. The delay of a century actually helped settle and solidify the soil underneath the tower, making it more stable to support the entire weight of the completed tower.
This design, although flawed from the beginning, showed how the Italian builders found a way to compensate for their mistakes and making it work to their advantage. Because of their ingenious plan, although the tower is actually curved ever so slightly, this move ensured that it is still standing to this very day.
An oddity in architecture and design, but it is this oddity that it drew the attention and interest of the people towards it. This has been its trademark or calling card which made it world-famous. It has been featured in many world-reknowned magazines like Time and National Geographic.