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Chicago's Willis Tower bays reopen after cracks

Published: Friday, May 30, 2014 10:30 a.m. CST
Caption
(M. Spencer Green)
People stand on the floor of one of four transparent ledges that jut out from the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower in Chicago on Thursday, May 29, 2014. The see-through glass bays known as The Ledge were designed with a protective coating that completely covers all glass surfaces to protect against scratches. One of the coatings cracked Wednesday night when a family was standing on it. Officials say the family wasn't in danger and the coating does not affect the structural integrity of the enclosure. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
Caption
(M. Spencer Green)
Glaziers from MTH Industries prepare to replace a layer of protective coating over the glass surface on the floor of one of four transparent ledges that jut out from the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower in Chicago on Thursday, May 29, 2014. The see-through glass bays known as The Ledge were designed with a protective coating that completely covers all glass surfaces to protect against scratches. One of the coatings cracked Wednesday night when a family was standing on it. Officials say the family wasn't in danger and the coating does not affect the structural integrity of the enclosure. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

CHICAGO – Popular observation ledges at Chicago's Willis Tower have reopened after the towering glass bays were closed for inspection when they appeared to crack beneath visitors' feet.

The Willis Tower temporarily limited access to the bays, known as The Ledge, on Thursday for routine inspection. The rest of the Skydeck on the 103rd floor of the building formerly known as the Sears Tower remained opened.

The glass itself didn't crack Wednesday night and officials say visitors were never in danger. Instead, a protective coating covering the glass produced the spider web of cracks.

A spokesman says Friday that all four bays are open.

The ledges first opened in 2009 and attract visitors in part because walking onto them allows the disconcerting feeling of stepping onto air, hundreds of feet above ground.

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Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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