New Advice on Inauguration Day Travel
As Jan. 20 approaches, we'll get more specific advice from planners about the conditions that will prevail downtown. Some previously announced details may change, as they did last week when the charter bus parking plan was revised.
But this isn't changing: The planners consistently warn that travel for everyone, whether they're commuters or people planning to watch the swearing-in and parade, will be extremely difficult.
Monday's announcement from the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies highlighted that. The announcement dealt with the difficulties of attending the swearing-in at the Capitol.
"In addition to the 240,000 ticketed guests, a million or more people are expected to view the inauguration from the National Mall between 4th Street and the Lincoln Memorial, along with hundreds of thousands of others who plan on watching the Inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue," the committee said in its statement.
Okay, if you know that, what do you know? It's not your fault, but you're going to have a tough day and need to have a plan.
Here's how the committee statement put it:
"We recommend planning ahead, but also caution that any plans made in advance should be double-checked in the days and hours prior to the event in case of changes to transportation schedules, street and other closures, and other factors that may impact your travel plans."
And have a backup plan in the likely event that Plan A goes astray because of some problem you didn't anticipate. Remember, we don't get to practice this. It's not like working out a plan to get to Nationals Park or FedEx Field after the first bad experience. We get one chance at Inauguration Day.
The latest logistical information from the committee is consistent with what we've been hearing:
"A security perimeter will be established around the U.S. Capitol and the parade route on or before January 20, 2009. Subway stations, bus stops, and streets within that perimeter will be closed. Street closures throughout Washington, D.C., will make traveling by car or taxi very difficult. Bridges from Virginia crossing the Potomac River into Washington, D.C., as well as major roadways from Maryland into Washington, D.C., may be closed to all but bus traffic."
Then the committee goes on to recommend how to get to the swearing-in at the Capitol. If you're thinking about being part of history, weigh these not-so-fun parts of the day. And if you're just heading for work, consider what this implies about your ability to get around:
"For those people who will be staying within 2 Miles of the U.S. Capitol, walking to the swearing-in ceremony will be the most reliable method of reaching the ticketed seated and standing areas. Be sure to carefully plan your return trip as well - it won't be possible to cross the Pennsylvania Avenue parade route, except at designated points and Metro will be extremely crowded."
Beyond 2 Miles of the U.S. Capitol: Use public transportation to get you as close as possible to the U.S. Capitol and walk from there.
This is a good bookmark: As plans develop, we post all the lastest news at Inauguration Central.
December 30, 2008; 9:24 AM ET
Save & Share: Previous: Maryland Announces Transit Cuts
Next: Traffic Alert: Accident Blocks EB Pennsylvania Ave. SE
Posted by: DCgovtemployee | December 30, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: bmurphy1 | December 30, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: rtthomson1 | December 30, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: thetan | December 30, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: wilmington10 | December 31, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: jpgdlc | December 31, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: jlynn432 | December 31, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: NatsNut | January 2, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: tlalonde | January 5, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.