Philanthropist gives $18M to refurbish Lincoln Memorial

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Philanthropist David Rubenstein, who has already donated tens of millions of dollars to refurbish the Washington Monument and other national icons, is giving $18 million to fix up the Lincoln Memorial.

The National Park Service announced the gift Monday. The money will be used to fix the memorial’s roof, clean the marble and improve accessibility by adding a second elevator. The park service also plans to create 15,000 square feet of visitor space tucked beneath the memorial for exhibits.

Rubenstein says his admiration for Lincoln drew him to this project.

The Lincoln Memorial draws more 7 million visitors annually and is the most visited attraction on the National Mall.

Park Service Director John Jarvis said the memorial, completed in 1922, is structurally sound but does need some repair work.