Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Leaning Tower of Niles

Every night at work I sit in the parking lot of Costco acting as security keeping an eye out for intruders or thieves, but actually I’m doing homework or watching a movie in my car. Anyways, sitting in the parking lot I have a pretty good view of an odd little piece of architecture in Illinois, the Leaning Tower of Niles, which is a replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. It was constructed in 1934, 600 years after the Leaning Tower of Pisa, as a recreational site for employees at a near by company. The Niles tower is half the size of Pisa’s tower. 94 ft compared to Pisa’s 177 ft. Its original purpose was to store water for outdoor recreational swimming pools. Today it sits next to a bankrupt used car dealership, a YMCA, and across the street is a Target and Costco. It doesn’t hold any water anymore and only acts as a sight to see. I see it almost every night, but I don’t think much of it. I find it funny that it is mentioned in weird Illinois books or roadside attractions you must see and visit when in Illinois. I have seen this tower my whole life and never thought much of it, except that I knew I wanted to see the real one when I grew up, and soon I will.

The tower has been kept in good shape over the years. It seems to be a special landmark that Niles holds on to dearly. For Christmas, they have wrapped lights and Christmas tree stuff (I don’t know what it is called) around the tower. One of these days I will go up for a closer look.

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