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Sources: Inauguration Organizers to Open More Viewing Space

It looks like organizers are going to be opening up the Mall to accommodate more people, sources tell Inauguration Watch. In the past, the area from 7th Street NW to 15th Street NW was used for staging the parade.

But now, that area will be open to the public, with an estimated capacity to hold about 1 million people. Parade staging will be moved to the Ellipse, according to the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the plan has not been finalized.

There will be 250,000 tickets issued for Barack Obama's swearing-in ceremony outside the Capitol. Those who do not have tickets but wish to attend can come and stand on the Mall, where organizers have said they will have jumbo televisions set up. D.C. and federal officials have said Obama's inaugural could break the reacord of the 1.2 million people who attended Lyndon B. Johnson's ceremony in 1965.

By David A Nakamura  |  December 4, 2008; 8:00 AM ET  | Category:  Parade , Swearing-in Ceremony
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What I'm curious about is whether the people standing on the mall will be subject to the same restrictions as the ticket-holders. I don't want to be on the parade route, but I hope the mall area will be filled with celebrating people who are allowed to have umbrellas and thermoses of hot chocolate. it seems like a lot more fun to be watching the tv with a large crowd instead of crammed into the the parade route or wherever the ticket-holders will be coralled into and policed over.
Hopefully as soon as you know - you can post it so we can plan accordingly.

Posted by: cranprune | December 4, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

It will be logistically impossible to make 1.2 million people pass through checkpoints or to check all their bags outside the ticket area. The restrictions close to the Capitol is primarily for Obama's safety.

Posted by: AustininDC | December 4, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

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