The Lincoln Memorial will soon undergo what is most likely the biggest overhaul for the structure since it was dedicated almost 100 years ago. The National Park Service announced that the Memorial will be renovated with help from philanthropist David Rubenstein's $18.5 million donation. The renovation is expected to take four years. The Memorial will remain open during the work.
The renovation will expand the exhibit space, bathrooms, and bookstore inside the Memorial. This area beneath beneath the chamber that supports the statue of Abraham Lincoln will increase from roughly 750 square feet to 15,000 square feet, reported The Washington Post. After the work is complete, visitors will be able to view the foundation that supports the memorial along with the graffiti placed there by the workers who built the monument in 1922. The slate roof will also be repaired, and the 60-foot-long Jules Guérin murals inside will be restored, according to The Washington Post. Damaged brick and marble masonry will also be repaired.
Rubenstein's donation was part of the National Park Foundation's Centennial Campaign for America's National Parks, which is the largest comprehensive fundraising campaign in the Foundation's history, according to the National Park Service's press release. The effort's goal is to raise $350 million. Currently, over $200 million have been raised.
Past projects Rubenstein has contributed to include the repair of the Washington Monument in 2012 and the refurbishment of the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial in April 2015.
· Lincoln Memorial, nearing 100, to get multimillion-dollar overhaul [The Washington Post]
· David Rubenstein Donates $18.5 Million to the National Park Foundation to Restore the Lincoln Memorial [PR Newswire]