The Statue of Liberty (pictured above by iPhil Photos) is to reopen its doors later this month, more than a year after closing to the general public.
The iconic New York monument closed in October last year to undergo extension renovations and will reopen on October 28 – the statue’s 126th birthday.
Most of the restoration on the statue has been on the inside, with new lifts, improved stairways and re-modelled toilets. Even the water fountains have been improved.
Part of the statue will remain closed while more work is done, but the National Park Service – which operates the monument – has said it expects it to be fully opened in early 2013.
Access to some parts of the pedestal, upon which the statue stands, will be limited until next year, including the museum inside the monument.
Yet visitors will still be able to reach the statue’s crown, along with the pedestal observation level and part of the star-shaped fort at the base of the monument.
Those who’d like to reach the Crown must be able to walk stairs (including a narrow spiral staircase inside the Statue’s body) as there is no lift access. The Torch has been closed since the “Black Tom” explosion of July 30, 1916.
Current ferry and tour fees are $9 (about £6) for children aged 4-12, $17 (£10.50) for adults and $14 (£8.70) for visitors aged 62 and older. You can purchase tickets via www.statuecruises.com.
To visit the Crown, go to www.statuecruises.com and select “Reserve with Crown Ticket”. The prices are the same.
“We are very excited that Lady Liberty will once again open her doors on her 126th birthday, October 28,” said David Luchsinger, superintendent of the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island.
“We have reached a critical milestone in our Fire and Life Safety Project where we can begin to allow visitors back to the monument on a limited basis while the project moves to completion by the end of the year.
The reopening of the Statue of Liberty marks an improvement in public access to America’s attractions, which has been relatively limited since the terrorist attacks on New York in 2001.
Museums in New York are not open seven days a week, while tours of the White House have been very limited. Yet the statue’s reopening heralds a change.
The Museum of Modern Art in New York is due to stay open seven days a week from May next year, and the Metropolitan Museum may be set to do the same. If you’re thinking about a trip to the States, there’s never been a better time to go.