Washington Monument to Remain Closed for Quake Repairs

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By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) — The Washington Monument will remain closed for repairs for at least another year, National Park Service officials said Monday.

The 555-foot-tall monument has been closed since an earthquake struck the mid-Atlantic region near Richmond, Virginia, in August 2011. Repairs are expected to begin this fall.

The service said in a news release that exterior scaffolding will be needed for the repair work, which will take 12 to 18 months to complete. The release said some of the repair work will include sealing cracks, removing loose pieces of stone and repairing joints.

Some interior tie beams will also be fixed.

A pedestrian walkway will be redirected to make room for a temporary road for construction vehicles.

The 5.8-magnitude earthquake may have also caused the structure to sink a little.

David Rubenstein, co-founder of the investment firm The Carlyle Group, has donated $7.5 million toward the repair project.

With Rubenstein’s donation and congressional funds that were approved in December, Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes said in January there was enough money to begin the repairs.

CNN’s Lindy Royce contributed to this report.