Often those who set out to break a Guinness World Record do it for the glory, but the motive behind the Herculean effort of erecting a 36-metre (118-foot) Lego Tower in Tel Aviv was more sentimental – it was built to honour the memory of an eight-year-old Israeli boy who loved to play with Lego, but died from cancer.
The new monument, Omer Tower, is named after Omer Sayag who passed away after a battle with cancer back in 2014. What’s perhaps more impressive than its incredible size is the fact that the initiative was started by his former teachers, who knew his passion for the famous building blocks and eventually brought the entire community together to build the statue in his honour.
The Tel Aviv City Hall and Young Engineers, which aims to promote learning about the industry through model construction, made a joint effort to design a secure structure, while people from all over the city came to help create the Lego building; both the public and local businesses donated the bright bricks to help it reach its spectacular height.
In true festive spirit, thousands of people from more than two dozen community organisations worked from December 12, all the way through December 24 on the project, each creating their own sections of the tower.
The groups’ sections were decorated with their individual insignias, created in Arabic and Hebrew, and were then assembled on top of each other in Rabin Square in central Tel Aviv on the final two days of the project.
In total, around half a million Lego bricks were used during the construction, which are now held together with the help of cranes and the installation of heavy-duty wires. Despite the sheer number of bricks used, the project wasn’t sponsored by Lego, but the Young Engineers group.
This isn’t the first attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the tallest tower constructed out of Lego – back in 2015, there was an attempt made in Milan and a year before that, one statue was erected in Budapest. This latest effort is approximately 89 centimetres (35 inches) taller than the previous record, which was set more than 10 years ago in Italy.
While Guinness World Records needs to officially confirm that it is the world’s tallest Lego structure at 35.95 metres (117 feet 11 inches), the measurements and pictures taken from a drone have been submitted. It’s unclear yet when Omer Tower will be disassembled, or whether it will in fact remain in the square permanently.