Closings, detours for tree lighting
[This post has been updated]
The National Christmas Tree Lighting and the headaches posed by the closing of some downtown streets is drawing nigh.
The event is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday on the Ellipse, south of the White House. According to the District Department of Transportation, the following streets will be closed beginning about 4:30 p.m. through the end of the event:
-- 15th Street from Pennsylvania/E Street NW to Constitution Avenue.
-- 17th Street from New York Avenue NW to Constitution.
Parking will be restricted on 15th and 17th streets from Pennsylvania to Constitution from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday.
Dr. Gridlock advises that the best best for those with tickets to the ceremony is to take Metrorail to McPherson Square, Farragut North, Farragut West, Federal Triangle or Metro Center.
Expect widespread impacts to transit services that operate on the streets in this area. We'll provide updates as they become available.
Some Metrobus routes will experience detours from 4:30 to 7 p.m.
-- Routes 32, 36, 37 and 39 westbound will use 13th Street NW to I Street and eastbound will use K Street to 13th Street.
-- Routes 42, S2 and S4 eastbound will use K Street NW to 11th Street.
-- Route 13 will be split, with 13A accessing Virginia Avenue and 19th Street via Constitution Avenue and the Memorial Bridge; 13B will access the Federal Triangle Metrorail station via Independence Avenue and the 14th Street Bridge.
Starting points for routes will also change:
-- H1, L1 and N3 will start at Virginia Avenue and 19th Street NW.
-- P1 and X1 will start at 10th Street terminal.
-- L2 will start at Farragut Square .
-- 11Y, G8, P17-19, W13 and X2 will start at Franklin Square.
-- Some S2 and S4 buses will turn around at Franklin Square.
If Constitution Avenue is closed during the lighting, Metro says buses will travel north on 18th, 20th or 22nd streets to K Street or south on 17th Street to Independence Avenue.
Maryland Commuter Bus
The Maryland Transit Administration says many of its routes will be affected and riders can expect significant delays. The agency announced the following changes for Route 929:
-- After serving the stop on Independence Avenue and 7th Street SW, the bus will continue straight on Independence to serve the stop on 18th Street and C Street NW. The following stops will not be served: Constitution Avenue and 7th Street NW, Constitution Avenue and 10th Street NW, and Constitution Avenue between 14th and 15th streets NW.
If you have any plans in the city tonight, the tree lighting may well affect your travel to and from venues. The Kennedy Center has several perfomances scheduled; the Florida Panthers are in town to take on the Washington Capitals; and there are events at the Smithsonian that may be affected.
Are you going to the National Christmas Tree Lighting or other events in the area? Or do you have advice for avoiding the traffic and subway congestion? Post a comment below.
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