Zagreb Cathedral, in Kaptol, is a Roman Catholic institution and most monumental sacral building in Croatia. During the huge earthquake that hit Zagreb on 22th March south spire crumbled down during the quake, and the second one got significant damage and moved from its original place 15 cm. Alpinists were removing parts that they could, but on expert recommendations the 13 m of spear had to be taken down completely without doubt.
Yesterday around 6 pm historical moment happened and top of north spire was taken down from the cathedral. Earlier that day Archbishop Josip Bozanic of Zagreb blessed the damaged cathedral and the workers at the construction site.
Even though; architects, builders, alpinists and other responsible people and specialist never done such job (as they as didn’t had to do it before), they did amassing job. They calculated, measuring, bearing in mind the slightest details. Everything had to be done precisely. I thing they are all heroes in fact all people who were helping and volunteering since the big shake are.
I was watching literally all day TV as the removal was suppose to be between 10 am and 2 pm, but due to a strong wind they were keep postponing. Wind had to be up to 5m per hour. What they did was that they put a small amount of explosive to cut the spire in other to separate it from the cathedral building. They covered spire with cover to keep for stones spreading due to detonation.
On the count of fife detonation went off and the cover caught a little bit of fire but it went out in few seconds. Than a 500 ton crane lift, removed and lowered a 30 tone spire. What a responsibility for a man to push that button! It was sad to watch, definitely something that I will never seen in my life again. It took nearly 1000 years to get the Cathedral in this state and next year both spires were supposed to be finished after 30 years of renovation. I don’t know if I will ever see the end of it.
Anyhow, the whole procedure was about 20 min. I hope they would put as a memory the spire next to the wall where the big clock is, which ironically fell down from the tower when Cathedral had only one tower in the last big earthquake in 1880.