Helicopter delivers four tons of structural steel to top of UT's - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Helicopter delivers four tons of structural steel to top of UT's bell tower

A worker guides a steel beam into place atop UT's University Hall (Source: WTOL) A worker guides a steel beam into place atop UT's University Hall (Source: WTOL)
Helicopter off to pick up another beam to deliver to the top of the 250 foot tower (Source: WTOL) Helicopter off to pick up another beam to deliver to the top of the 250 foot tower (Source: WTOL)
Onlookers checking out the show (Source: WTOL) Onlookers checking out the show (Source: WTOL)
University Hall (Source: WTOL) University Hall (Source: WTOL)
TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) -

Crowds showed up with blankets and lawn chairs.

All eyes were trained on the iconic 205 foot tall University Hall bell tower at the University of Toledo.

The building was empty.

Areas around it were closed off to the public.

Peregrine falcons circled the tower.

So what drew the crowds on a Friday night?

A helicopter delivering four tons of structural steel to reinforce the tower.

Thirteen beams were carefully lifted into place by the chopper, a safe, fast procedure to deliver material into hard to reach places.

A crew inside the tower would guide the beams into place.

"We started to see some structural cracks at the top of the structure and to insure our tower remains for years to come, we're reinforcing the top of the structure with some structural steel," said Jason Toth, UT Associate Vice President for Facilities and Construction.

Everybody watched in awe as the steel beams were hoisted into place.

Everybody agrees: the chopper pilot was the star of the night.

"That was very cool. I was amazed how they maneuvered it inside the tower like that," said Trish Mandan.

Michelle Schroeder was also amazed.

"I would not like to be the helicopter pilot. That's a lot of expertise that seemed real tricky," said Michelle.

But what about the peregrine falcons.

They live in the bell tower.

UT officials worked with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to make sure they left the tower during all the commotion.

"We've been up there today getting things prepped. They're all safe and sound. Have flown away. We anticipate they'll be gone for the evening, when the chopper is gone, they'll return and everything will be fine," said Mr. Toth.

The work isn't quite finished yet.

The beams will now have to be welded into place.

That should be done by August 14th.

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