Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool drained to remove algae - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool drained to remove algae

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WASHINGTON -

The fight to control the algae in the refurbished Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool is escalating.

The National Park Service decided rather than try to eliminate the algae from the existing water to start all over.

Park service spokesman Carol Johnson says the pool was drained Thursday and will remain empty for at least a week.

After numerous attempts to adjust the ozone level of the pool were unsuccessful in getting rid of the algae. Officials decided it would be better to drain the pool than continue adjusting the ozone levels. Letting the algae disintegrate naturally may have taken months.

Algae and scum have been covering parts of the pool since it reopened. It had been closed for a two-year renovation and was reengineered to draw river water from the Tidal Basin instead of city drinking water. The system is supposed to filter and circulate the water to keep it cleaner than in the past. 

The park service says the system that fills the pool is being recalibrated to neutralize nutrients that feed algae.

The Washington Post reports: "Previously, draining the reflecting pool has taken up to three weeks, but Carol Johnson said Park Service officials think it can complete the work in a shorter time.

The cost of draining the pool and removing the algae is estimated at $100,000 and will require 65 contractors along with Park Service staff members working full time to complete it, Johnson said.

Previously, draining the reflecting pool has taken up to three weeks.

The cost of draining the pool and removing the algae is estimated at $100,000 and will require 65 contractors along with Park Service staff members working full time to complete it, Johnson said."

The renovation of the pool site cost $34 million and took two years.

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