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Melania Trump's White House tennis pavilion begins construction

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The White House began construction on a new tennis pavilion on Tuesday that will feature a design and layout selected by First Lady Melania Trump.

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“As we break ground on the new tennis pavilion, it is a great honor to share this moment alongside the many talented individuals and craftsmen involved in bringing it to fruition,” the first lady said in a statement. “Architectural inspiration for the pavilion is drawn from the White House, with the end goal of the new structure on the south lawn complementing and contributing to the People’s house. It is my hope that this private space will function as a place to gather and spend leisure time for First Families.”

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The first lady was present for a groundbreaking ceremony on the tennis center. While the project’s cost and timeline for completion are unclear, the White House said construction will be funded by private donations.

The tennis pavilion’s design was inspired by the East and West Wings of the White House. The structure “will utilize the historic Children’s Garden and reinforce the entire area as a private gathering place for First Families to relax and unwind,” the White House added in a release.

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An existing tennis court on White House grounds was turned into a basketball court during former President Barack Obama’s administration.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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