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Food and travel captivate Janet Podolak, who chronicles both for The News-Herald. Get the back story of her three decades of stories here. Guest bloggers and fellow News-Herald staffers also periodically share details of their trips.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Washington DC earthquake repairs still underway

It was a year ago today that an earthquake rumbled across the Virginia countryside and sent tourists and others scurrying away from shaking buildings in Washington, D.C.Some buildings still are affected.
Last weekend when I was there I witnessed netting still strung beneath the ornate ceiling at Union Station, where bits and pieces of the 1904 building continue to fall off. Designed by Chicago skyscraper creator Daniel Burnham, it was closed for a time for restoration work that was completed in 1988.

The Washington Monument, which closed right after the Aug. 23 quake, still is closed. I saw workers using what appeared to be mountain climbing gear were near the top of the spire-like pyramid to make repairs. A billionaire history buff donated $7.5 million so the cracks could be repaired
A seismic study commissioned by the National Park Service and released last Thursday determined that last year's 5.8 magnitude earthquake was not likely to be repeated in 2,000 years

The Washington National Cathedral, which also dates from the early 1900s,. was another building that incurred serious damage in the rare earthquake. Several tons of hand-carved masonry on the cathedral’s three high towers were damaged.  But today the Cathedral announced receipt of a $5 million gift from the Lilly Endowment Inc. for restoration of damages. The Indianapolis-based Lily family was instrumental in building the cathedral.

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