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Ancient Roman monument-turned-eyesore gets needed makeover

Associated Press logo Associated Press 5/2/2017
A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP) © The Associated Press A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

ROME (AP) — The mausoleum of Roman Emperor Augustus, a towering monument built in 28 B.C. but now a decrepit eyesore in Rome's center, is being restored.

Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi, second from right, wears a protective helmet during a visit to the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP) © The Associated Press Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi, second from right, wears a protective helmet during a visit to the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

The 10-million-euro ($10.9 million) project is expected to be completed in 2019.

A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP) © The Associated Press A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

The structure, located along the Tiber River, is made up of circular, vaulted corridors with the sepulcher in the center. It has been covered with trees, weeds and garbage and closed to the public since the 1970s because of safety concerns.

A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP) © The Associated Press A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

Its restoration is being financed by the city of Rome, the culture ministry and a 6 million-euro donation from the TIM phone company.

A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP) © The Associated Press A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

On Tuesday, Mayor Virginia Raggi donned a protective helmet and paid a visit, saying said she hoped to return it to Romans soon.

A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)

A view of the Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome during a special opening for the press, Tuesday May 2, 2017. The mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Augustus, a decrepit eyesore fenced off in the center of Rome for decades, is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019. Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 B.C. for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among the many of the imperial family there. (Ettore Ferrari/ANSA via AP)
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