If the Pine Street Inn's tower looks remarkably similar to Provincetown's Pilgrim Monument, it's because they were both modeled after the same historic building. Built nearly twenty years apart, both campaniles (or bell towers) were designed to replicate the Torre del Mangia in Siena, Italy.
It's now a homeless shelter, but the South End building was originally Boston's Fire Department headquarters. The tall campanile was used as a drill tower — new recruits would practice jumping from its windows into nets below.
Pine Street Inn's recent shift in strategy may help end chronic homelessness in Boston.