WASHINGTON (AP) — While the Washington Monument is closed for earthquake damage repairs over the next year, 488 lamps will restore the marble tower's glow each night on the National Mall.
The National Park Service lit up the monument for the first time on Monday evening — and will continue to do so each night at dusk. A crowd gathered on the Mall and at the Lincoln Memorial as the park service turned on the lights of a decorative design in sections, starting at the bottom. It took a few minutes for the lights to reach their full glow.
Philanthropist David Rubenstein donated $7.5 million to fund half the cost of repairs.
A blue, semi-transparent fabric has been wrapped around the scaffolding that surrounds the monument as it undergoes extensive repairs of its 2011 earthquake damage.