Fence Erected Around White House
The new barrier is almost twice the height of the previous one and includes state-of-the-art security technologies
President Trump will finally get a stronger fence, though not on the border with Mexico, but in his front and backyard. The US Secret Service and the National Park Service have teamed up to replace the current fence around the White House. This was preceded by several perimeter violations, including the 2014 incident in which an attacker climbed over a fence and entered the presidential residence before being stopped..
The first part of the new fence has already been installed. Its height is approximately four meters, i.e. the new barrier is almost twice the height of the old one. The posts are thicker and stronger. In addition, during construction, technologies are used to prevent climbing and intrusion..
“The new fence will be almost twice as tall and will be explosion and battering proof, so all of its elements must be strengthened,” explains Thomas Lübcke, a spokesman for the US Commission on the Fine Arts..
The first fence around the White House, a wooden fence, was erected under Thomas Jefferson in the early 19th century. Over the years, a stone and iron fence was added to it. The point was not to keep people out. Visitors roamed freely around the White House.
“It was relatively easy to go inside and go up to the second floor. It was there that the president worked before the construction of the West Wing. You can imagine how the president is trying to get busy, and he is upset by job seekers, lobbyists, all kinds of people who, in fact, stood in the corridor in the hope of a short meeting with the president or just to catch a glimpse of him, “says an employee of the White House Historical Association. Matthew Costello.
Until the 20s of the last century, presidents themselves decided how accessible the territory should be. The US Secret Service eventually took control of security issues. This happened after three incumbent presidents were assassinated over 36 years, from 1865 to 1901..
“Abraham Lincoln, James Garfield, William McKinley were killed. If you were born in 1840, then during your life you could have witnessed the murders of three presidents, ”recalls Costello.
The United States Commission on the Fine Arts sought to balance the application of new security technologies in the new fence while maintaining the visual appeal of the barrier..
“You can’t just take an old design and double it up. You need to re-evaluate the elements themselves, the materials from which they are made, how they work together. Find the right proportions, figure out which material to use where. What should be the final finishing? ” – Thomas Lübke argues.
The fence is expected to be completed in 2021. Thereafter, the focus may shift to the design of the rest of the White House complex, where both security and aesthetic considerations need to be taken into account..