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Eiffel Tower in Paris

New World Wonder: La Tour Eiffel

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Built in 1889, Eiffel Tower in Paris pioneered new uses for metal construction.
The Eiffel Tower, tallest structure in Paris

The Eiffel Tower, tallest structure in Paris

Press photo © 2000-2006 NewOpenWorld Foundation
The Eiffel Tower Pioneers Metal Construction
The Industrial Revolution in Europe brought about a new trend: the use of metallurgy in construction. Because of this, the engineer's role became increasingly important, in some cases rivaling that of the architect. Built in 1889, Eiffel Tower in Paris is perhaps the most famous example of this new use for metal. The Tower is named after Gustave Eiffel, the architect, designer, and engineer.

Engineering the Eiffel Tower
Rising 324 feet (1,063 meters), the Eiffel Tower is the tallest structure in Paris. For 40 years, it measured the tallest in the world. The metal lattice-work, formed with very pure structural iron, makes the tower both extremely light and able to withstand tremendous wind forces. The Eiffel Tower open to the wind, so when you stand near the top you may have the sensation that you are outside. The open structure also allows visitors to look "through" the tower - to stand in one part of the tower and look through the latticed wall or floor to another part.

The Eiffel Tower Becomes a Landmark
The Eiffel Tower was originally built for the 1889 World Fair to commemorate 100th anniversary of the French Revolution. During construction, the Eiffel was considered an eyesore by the French, but the criticism died down once the tower was completed. In 2007, the Eiffel Tower was a finalist in a world-wide campaign to name New 7 Wonders of the World. Today, a trip to Paris is not complete without a visit to the top of the Eiffel Tower.

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