Inspectors take a look at the Washington Monument on August 23, 2011. (Getty Images)
By Melanie Eversley, USA TODAY
(USA TODAY) - The Washington Monument, damaged in a magnitude-5.8 earthquake last August, could remain closed into 2014, the Washington Post is reporting that the National Park Service is saying.
Repairs will require the 555-foot-tall structure to be shrouded in scaffolding, the Post reports. The project also could require the removal of some of the monument's flagpoles and benches, according to the Post, attributing the information to Robert Vogel, superintendent of the park service's National Mall and Memorial Park.In January, officials said the monument might be closed until next year for its $15 million repair project, the Post reports.
The National Park Service closed the monument to the public after the Aug. 23 earthquake left four cracks, USA TODAY reported last year. A few days later when Hurricane Irene blew through the capital, the park service found pools of water inside the structure and places where mortar had shifted to such a degree that sunlight was visible.