The Eiffel Tower is one of the world's most famous sights. The 324-metre-tall iron tower attracts millions of tourists to Paris every year. It has been an iconic part of Paris' skyline for 133 years. However, it is showing its age. Engineers recently conducted a survey of the monument. They found that its metal is full of rust. They said it is "in a poor state". They added that if its designer Gustave Eiffel was alive today and saw his creation, "he would have a heart attack". Engineers say there are many cracks in the iron. The tower needs many repairs. A 2016 report on the tower stated there were 698 faults on the tower. These were serious enough to put the tower's long-term future in doubt.
Construction of the Eiffel Tower started in January 1887. It opened to the public on the 31st of March, 1889. It was built to celebrate the 1889 World's Fair in Paris. Builders needed 10,100 tons of iron to make the tower. It was made from 18,000 sections and 2.5 million rivets. The original plan was for the tower to be taken down after 20 years. However, the French government changed its mind and kept it in place. The tower is currently being repainted ahead of the 2024 Olympics. Engineers say painting the metal will not make the rust problem go away. They say the existing paint needs to be completely removed first. However, this will take too long and the tower would lose tourist revenue.