The Eiffel is one of the most fascinating and famous towers in the world. French engineer Gustave Eiffel and his company designed the Parisian tower, the construction of which began in 1887. The tower was ultimately completed by 1889.
More than 18,000 individual pieces were used to construct the Eiffel tower in Paris, France. Many of these pieces were produced based on detailed technical drawings. The tower stands 16 piers that use hydraulic jacks, or devices that support the tower with force from water. When the tower’s first platform was built, only minor adjustments were necessary.
In addition to the tower's social and aesthetic value—that is, its or value related to beauty—Eiffel wanted it to have a larger purpose. So, he installed meteorological equipment at the top of the tower to investigate weather conditions. He also used the tower to conduct experiments by building wind tunnels at its base. The tower was used for radio transmission and to house France's first radio and television station. The Eiffel Tower continues to facilitate scientific experiments today.
There were many supporters of the Eiffel project; however, some civilians had complaints. A petition circulated. Many worried about the effect it would have on Paris' skyline. Some thought it would be an insult to the city's great buildings. At one point, its construction even stopped due to the fears of local residents who thought their lives and property were in danger. One mathematician claimed that the whole structure would collapse before it reached 229 meters. However, Eiffel, who was already bearing the majority of the cost of the project, agreed to continue construction entirely at his own risk.
Despite the complaints, the Eiffel persisted and the Tower was completed. During the Paris Exposition, two million visitors took the tower elevator to its first, second, and third platforms for the first time. The first platform later housed a restaurant. By 1964, the Eiffel tower was proclaimed an historic monument and a symbol of the city's unique beauty.
To this day, the Eiffel Tower remains a Parisian landmark.
[Sources: 100 Great Wonders of the World; Thomas Net]