WASHINGTON — After being closed for three years, the Washington Monument opened Thursday morning. It had been closed since August 2016 in order to build the new visitor screening facility and modernize the elevator that takes people up to the 500-foot observation level.
The completion of the new security building was delayed for mitigation of possibly contaminated soil in the construction area. Officials said the potentially contaminated soil is below the ground surface and is not a threat to the public.
The monument will be open daily from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
For those wanting to visit, the National Park Service says same-day tickets for opening day and all tours through Oct. 18 will be available on a first-come, first-served basis starting at 8:30 a.m. at the Washington Monument Lodge. It's located at 15th Street between Madison Drive NW and Jefferson Drive SW.
For those wanting to visit starting Oct. 19 and beyond, advance tickets may be ordered at www.recreation.gov. Registration opens Oct. 10 at 10 a.m. Visitors can still show up on a first-come, first-served basis starting at 8:30 a.m. at the Monument Lodge.