One of New York’s most iconic landmarks, the Statue of Liberty, is set to reopen to visitors by the 4th July 2013. Liberty Island and the Statue of Liberty have been closed to the public ever since Hurricane Sandy caused significant damage to the area last year.
The welcomed news that the National Park Service expects to reopen the Statue of Liberty this summer was announced by secretary of the interior Ken Salazar this week. “Hurricane Sandy inflicted major damage on facilities that support the Statue of Liberty – destroying the docks, crippling the energy infrastructure on Ellis Island and wiping out the security screening system – but we are fully committed to reopening this crown jewel as soon as it's safe for visitors and not a second later,” said Salazar.
The reopening of the landmark and visitor attraction will coincide with the July Fourth celebrations taking place around America. "July Fourth is the perfect day to reopen a symbol of our nation's freedom, and speaks volumes about New York's resilience," said city senator Charles E. Schumer.
"Lady Liberty was hit hard by Superstorm Sandy, but just like New York, she will be back – and stronger than ever. Being open for the summer tourism season isn't just important symbolically, it's a boon to the city's economy and businesses, as the statue attracts millions of tourists from all over the world to our shores,” he added.
The Statue of Liberty generated around $174 million in economic activity in 2011 and supported 2,218 jobs. Around 3.7 million people visited Liberty Island in 2011, making it one of New York’s biggest tourist attractions.