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Work on Mount Rushmore to Begin This Week

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

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Construction projects on the Mount Rushmore National Memorial are slated to begin this week and continue through much of 2020, according to recent reports.

The Projects

News first broke last year that $14 million worth of deferred work would finally be taking place through 2020.

While the likenesses of U.S. presidents will remain untouched, several projects are planned for the public amenities at the memorial. According to the Rapid City Journal, the biggest challenge will be streamlining the Avenue of Flags, which includes widening the terrace and moving the flags to the side.

Cedar-Guardian, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Construction projects on the Mount Rushmore National Memorial are slated to begin this week and continue through much of 2020, according to recent reports.

Currently, flags representing the states line the walkway of the avenue; however, not every state's commemorative plaque is wheelchair accessible. Once the work is completed, the flags will be mounted on concrete structures along the sides, which will retain the same state information and open up accessibility.

The adjustment will also help create a safer exit point for crowds, especially those in the amphitheater, which can seat 2,500 to 3,000.

Other changes are slated to include the installation of a restroom and elevator in Gutzon Borglum's 1938 studio, as well as restoring its double-sided fireplace. (Borglum was responsible for sculpting Mount Rushmore; work on the monument began in 1927.)

“Visitor center installation includes roof replacement, an enhanced waterproofing system and new stairwells,” the National Park Services notes on Mount Rushmore’s website. “Interior visitor center work consists of new elevators, upgraded plumbing, and improved heating, ventilating and cooling systems.”

Degrading granite pavers on the terrace will also be replaced with decorative concrete. Ramps near parking lots will also be brought up to Americans With Disabilities Act standards.

The Update

The Journal recently reported that the construction is funded by federal money marked for deferred maintenance projects.

Scull Construction Services Inc. (Rapid City, South Dakota) is the contractor for the work.

This construction will work on the terrace and Avenue of. the Flags, as well as the visitor center.

Other fixes were revealed earlier this year, including work to the Thomas Jefferson Sun Canopy and upgrades to the parking structure.


Tagged categories: Government; Government contracts; Maintenance + Renovation; NA; North America; Public spaces; Renovation

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