‘Leaning Tower of Dallas’ Finally Falls

Pisa can relax: The “Leaning Tower of Dallas” is just a memory.

An 11-story office building in Texas that refused to be demolished for two weeks, turning it into an accidental tourist attraction and social media sensation, finally came crashing down on Monday.

A wrecking ball took one final swing at the former Affiliated Computer Services building, causing the concrete and steel structure near downtown Dallas to vanish in a cloud of dust and debris.

Lloyd D. Nabors, whose Dallas-based demolition company was in charge of the project, said in a statement Monday that he would miss the camaraderie that had developed over the past two weeks, but was eager to see the property’s transformation into a mixed-use development.

The building’s drawn-out demise inspired memes and photographs of people in the foreground appearing to hold it up in an optical illusion, much the way visitors do at the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy.

It had all become a punchline in a state where residents like to boast that everything is bigger — which wasn’t the case for the wrecking ball used in the demolition. It was 3.5 feet tall and weighed 5,600 pounds, making it look small in photographs and in video footage of the building.

The Legoland Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth even built a miniature version of the lopsided tower, which it added to a replica of the skyline. A Dallas man started an online petition to save the building and make it a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

On the eve of the presidential primary in Texas, which is one of the big prizes on Super Tuesday, some joked on Twitter that the Leaning Tower of Dallas was dropping out of the race.

The demolition company first tried explosives to bring down the building on Feb. 16, but the tower just leaned to one side. Demolition workers had to wait for a large crane to arrive at the site to demolish the tower with the wrecking ball. Crews have spent the past week slowly chipping away at the building’s shell, which included stairwells and elevator shafts.

The building was demolished to make way for a mixed-use development called The Central. According to its developer, De La Vega Development, the 5-million-square-foot project will have “upscale multifamily, hospitality, office, retail and restaurant” spaces, and a 3.5-acre park.

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