Shipping Delay For MLK Memorial Stones Will Not Delay Project | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Filed Under:

Shipping Delay For MLK Memorial Stones Will Not Delay Project

Play associated audio
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial site is being prepared for 159 stone blocks, which will create the memorial.
Elliott Francis
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial site is being prepared for 159 stone blocks, which will create the memorial.

By Elliott Francis

The delay in the shipment of 159 blocks of granite for the new memorial honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. will not necessarily postpone construction.

Engineers for the project were hoping to have the blocks shipped from China to D.C. by May. Greece had offered to transport the material at no cost out of admiration for the civil rights leader. But the country now says it can't afford it.

Free shipping would've been nice, but not necessary, according to the memorial foundation's President, Harry Johnson.

"This was going to be a freebie that had it happened, we would have been able to take a credit off the total bill, but in terms of paying for it, it was already budgeted anyway," he says.

And as work to prepare the four-acre site on the northeast corner of the Tidal Basin continues, Johnson says he's confident the delay in shipping will not push back the project's completion date.

"Even though they were going to be shipped in May or June, work on the stone was not going to occur in America until September anyway," he says. "Having the stone sit in China, or sit in America, they were going to sit in storage for two months anyway."

Johnson says he now hopes to have the granite in this country by the end of July, and expects memorial to be finished on schedule by fall of 2011.

The group building the memorial has launched an "MLK Construction Cam" online this week to show progress on the $120 million project. The webcam feed is available here: http://www.mlkmemorial.org/earthcam

NPR

Picasso, Nazis And A Daring Escape In 'My Grandfather's Gallery'

As a little girl, Anne Sinclair knew Pablo Picasso. She talks with NPR's Scott Simon about why she didn't want the master to paint her picture, and her new memoir, My Grandfather's Gallery.
NPR

Syrup Induces Pumpkin-Spiced Fever Dreams

Hugh Merwin, an editor at Grub Street, bought a 63-ounce jug of pumpkin spice syrup and put it in just about everything he ate for four days. As he tells NPR's Scott Simon, it did not go well.
NPR

White House Alarm: Man Jumps Fence, Enters Residence

The Secret Service is looking into how a Texas man was able to breach the White House's security Friday. The man scaled a fence and opened a door to the residence before being arrested.
NPR

Tech Week: Smartphone Privacy, Cyberstalking, Alibaba's Big Debut

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba makes the biggest debut on the NYSE ever. The details, and the other tech stories that piqued our interest, are in this week's roundup.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.