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December 21, 2013

Ireland: Spire of Dublin

Filed under: Architecture, Europe, Ireland, Photography, Travel, Travel, Writing — Tags: , , , — anotherheader @ 6:09 pm

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Located on O’Connell Street in Dublin, at the site once occupied by Nelson’s Pillar, is the Spire of Dublin.  Known also as the Monument of Light, Dublin’s spire is a narrow, cone-shaped, and extremely tall stainless steel shaft that rises 398 feet above the street.  The highest structure in Dublin, the Spire of Dublin is also the world’s tallest sculpture.

From the distance the Spire of Dublin looks unbelievably thin.  When you reach the three-meter wide base and gaze skyward, the spire looks impossibly high; the top of the sculpture can’t be seen.  The peak appears to disappear into infinity.

It’s an odd feeling, standing at the base of tower.  Surely a structure this tall and thin must topple.  And perhaps the instincts are correct.  The Spire of Dublin might indeed be unstable if engineers had not installed a tuned mass damper to counteract sway.  True, the Spire of Dublin looks good in pictures.  But no picture can convey the feeling of standing at the base and looking up.

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