The day the Eiffel Tower opened – level 3
When a competition for the dominant structure of the world exhibition was announced in France in 1886, over 100 designs came. One of the designs was very special. It was a steel, 324-meter-high tower with four curved legs. The design was entered into the competition by Alexandre Gustave Eiffel who won the competition.
250 workers started to put together more than 18,000 pieces of steel. However, when they began assembling the second floor 200 meters above the ground, they went on strike. They wanted to reduce working hours from 12 hours to 9 and demanded a higher salary appropriate to the risk they took at such a height. Eiffel had no choice but to give in.
On May 6, 1889, the Eiffel Tower was opened to the public for an entrance fee of 5 francs. The costs returned in 6 years.
Difficult words: competition (a situation when people try to be better than the others), announce (to say officially), curved (not straight), assembling (putting together), strike (a situation when people stop working because they want more money), appropriate (correct for a situation), give in (to finally agree to do something that you opposed before).
What other concessions did Alexandre Gustave Eiffel have to make to the workers in order to get them to continue construction of the Eiffel Tower?
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