This closure replaces the Arlington Memorial Bridge Record of Determination signed on November 1, 2019 through November 2020. Pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 1.5, the National Park Service is imposing a partial and temporary closure to lanes and pedestrian paths on Arlington Memorial Bridge and Memorial Circle. One or more lanes and pedestrian paths may be closed for immediate repair work on the West Bound Lanes November 2019 to November 2020 and full closures of the bridge and/or circle for a short duration may be possible at any time. Such closures will be announced with signage and advance public announcements through media, where possible. This closure also applies to six staging areas including a new staging area that is being put in place in October 2019, northeast of Memorial Circle. The end date may be extended due to changes to personnel or material requirements, or weather. Unauthorized entry or activity is prohibited in this area while it is closed.
Because the construction and associated activities do not reasonably permit multiple occupancy, the public will not be permitted in the closed areas of Arlington Memorial Bridge and Memorial Circle. If additional areas in Arlington Memorial Bridge and Memorial Circle must be closed and fenced for construction activities, or for resource protection related to closures, this record of decision will be amended to reflect the additional closures. In the event such additional closures are necessary, persons are to immediately remove themselves and any personal property from these additional closed area(s).
This temporary and partial closure is not of a nature, magnitude and duration that will result in a significant alteration in the public use pattern, insofar as these construction activities are necessary for the repair of the bridge, and its continued use. Consistent with Park Service regulations, persons wishing to demonstrate may continue to use the remaining open park areas to the extent they can do so safely and without impeding construction activity or damaging resources. Indeed, consistent with public safety, park areas subject to this decision, but not yet needed for construction and related activities will remain open until such time as closure is necessary. Fences and or signage, traffic cones and other barriers will mark closed areas.
Given the safety and security protections necessary in the closed areas for such construction and associated activities, less restrictive measures will not suffice. Alternate walkways will be clearly identified for pedestrians on signage in the area. The closures will not adversely affect the parks' natural, aesthetic, or cultural values. The closures do not require significant modification to the resource management objectives, and are not of a highly controversial nature since this is similar to closures that occurred in past.
Accordingly, pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 1.5(b), publication as rulemaking in the Federal Register is unwarranted. This is consistent with hundreds of past partial and temporary park closures, the legal opinion of the Office of the Solicitor, and judicial adjudications. Pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 1.7, notice of this temporary and partial closure will be made through media advisories, fencing and posting of signs at conspicuous locations in the affected park area. Finally, pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 1.5(c), this determination is available to the public upon request.
(signed) Charles Cuvelier
November 5, 2019
Superintendent, George Washington Memorial Parkway