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Sunday's Last Night for Washington Monument Scaffold Lighting
Scaffold Will Begin to Be Removed Soon
The night skyline in the Washington DC area will be a little dimmer starting next Monday when the National Park Service turns off the decorative lights on the Washington Monument in preparation for taking down the scaffolding. Sunday, Nov. 3, will be the last night the scaffolding will be lit up. The scaffolding, constructed to provide access to repair damage from the August 2011 earthquake, will begin to be deconstructed the week ofNovember 11and will take about three months to take down completely.
"I know the decorative scrim and lighting are popular and will be missed, but we are excited that this brings us one step closer to reopening," said Bob Vogel, Superintendent of the National Mall and Memorial Parks. The Monument is expected to reopen to the public in Spring of 2014. "The Monument is a cultural and historic icon that the National Park Service is entrusted to preserve for future generations and that's what we are doing," said Vogel.
The exterior work is about 80 percent complete. Numerous "Dutchman" repairs – more than 150 -- were made and cracks filled at the top of the structure, where most of the damage occurred. Work will continue on the lower portions of the exterior as the scaffolding is removed.
Work on the interior, where there are structural repairs being made, will also continue. Interior work is about 30 percent complete.
Once the work on the building is done, the plaza around it will be replaced and the landscaping in the area restored.
"There's still considerable work to be done, but we're really grateful to our contractors for keeping this project on schedule, said Vogel. "They know how important this work is and the symbolism of the Monument and have treated it with the respect and care it deserves and moved things along as quickly as possible." Perini Management Services is the primary contractor for the project. Other firms working on the job are UBS, Lorton Stone and Grunley Construction Company.