The Washington Monument is ready for its face-lift.
Workers recently put up the last of the scaffolding that surrounds the 555-foot, 5 1/8-inch-tall structure, and to help you feel like you were there, the National Park Service has released a stomach-churning helmet cam video documenting the end of the four-month process.
The world’s tallest freestanding stone structure was damaged during a 5.8 magnitude earthquake on Aug. 23, 2011, and has been closed to the public ever since. It plans to reopen in spring 2014, with the total cost of the repair expected to reach some $15 million, according to the National Park Service.
In February, the scaffolding's tubing—which, if stretched out, would span 37 miles—began going up. Work was completed May 13, the day the video captured the workers at the very top, where the most damage occurred.
The scaffolding does not touch the historic obelisk, notes Carol Johnson of the National Mall and Monuments. “We have to protect everything, it’s a cultural resource,” she told Yahoo News.
Stone masons built of tougher stuff than we are will now make the repairs at 490 feet.
Another dizzying view was captured at the World Trade Center in New York City, marking the moment on May 12 when the spire, which finished off the building at 1,776 feet, was installed.
- Society & Culture
- National Park Service