Washington, DC

Photo by PoPville flickr user angela n.

From Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton’s office:

“Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) today sent a letter to the Acting Director of the National Park Service (NPS), David Vela, requesting the closure of the chambers of the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorials after reports that crowds had been forming at the sites over the weekend. Norton said her letter was motivated by concern for the safety of the general public and NPS employees during the coronavirus. Read More


At 1:25pm Cassandra wrote us: “Hey @PoPville we’re stuck at the top of the Washington monument. Broken elevator. No end in sight.”

Folks were understandable incredulous.

Charles emailed us the photo above: “I wish I was kidding. Elevator issues strike again.”

The Washington Post quoted and NPS spokesman:

“Normal operations resumed after about an hour,” Litterst said. He said tours were on schedule, and he apologized for the inconvenience.”

Charles tells me that they were originally told they’d be taking the stairs down but they were able to finally get the elevator working again.

The Washington Monument reopened this past Thursday, “after a 37-month closure to modernize the elevator control system and construct a new security screening facility.

The re-opening of the Washington Monument is another example of how the Trump Administration is enhancing visitors’ experiences at national parks and public lands by better meeting critical infrastructure and maintenance needs.”


Photo by PoPville flickr user John Sonderman

Ed. Note: The alternative is much worse.

From a press release:

“The National Park Service has begun draining the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool in order to repair a broken water line, which has affected the water quality of the pool this spring. While it is empty, the pool will also be cleaned. The Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool should be refilled and operational again by the week of June 16. Read More


Photo by PoPville flickr user Erinn Shirley

From the National Parks Service:

“Completion of the new security screening building for the Washington Monument has been delayed for mitigation of possibly contaminated soil in the construction area. The modernization of the monument’s elevator is substantially complete, with just final testing and certification of the safety systems remaining.

The potentially contaminated soil is below the ground surface and poses no risk to public health. The soil in question was likely introduced in the 1880s as the monument was being completed. Due to the necessary mitigation efforts, the reopening of the Washington Monument is now expected to take place in August. Read More


Photo by PoPville flickr user John Goucher

From the National Parks Service:

“The National Park Service has begun a 15-month project to restore the roofs, repair the stone, and clean the marble at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial. The memorial will remain open for the duration of the project, although some areas will be inaccessible.

The roof restoration and repair will consist of replacing the two flat upper and lower roofs that circle the dome to keep the building watertight and dry. Read More


Snapshot from “Target=”_blank”>This animation represents the revised concept as reviewed and approved by the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts on July 19, 2018: elements of the design are still in progress. Additional agency reviews will occur toward ultimate design approval by the Commission of Fine Arts, the National Capital Planning Commission, and the National Park Service.” See full “animation here.

From the National Parks Service:

“The National Park Service (NPS) is seeking comments on the proposed enhancements to Pershing Park for the national World War I Memorial. The project, including a comparison of the two alternatives, is available online at http://go.nps.gov/WWI-DEA. The public comment period is open February 6 – 27, 2019. The comment period, which originally ended on January 18, has been extended due to the partial government shutdown.

The Draft Environmental Assessment describes how the proposed national World War I Memorial will enhance Pershing Park (located on Pennsylvania Avenue, between 14th Street NW & 15th Street NW) by constructing appropriate sculptural and commemorative elements, including landscaping. Read More


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