Washington, Sep 19 (IANS) The Washington Monument, one of American capital city’s most iconic landmarks, is set to reopen on Thursday after several years of renovations.
The 555-foot tall marble obelisk named after the nation’s first President has received an upgrade to the existing elevator, as well as a new permanent screening facility, according to a release by the National Park Service.
First Lady Melania Trump is expected to attend Thursday’s reopening, Xinhua news agency reported.
The monument had been closed for the past eight years. An earthquake in 2011 left cracks in the stones near the top of the obelisk.
It reopened in 2014, but authorities were forced to close it again in 2016 due to elevator malfunctions.
Construction on the Washington Monument started in 1848 but wasn’t completed and opened to the public until 1888.
When completed, it was the tallest building in the world but was soon overtaken by Eiffel Tower in 1889.
It remains the tallest building in Washington D.C. and attracts about 500,000 visitors per year when opened.