News Release

National Park Service continues work to improve George Washington Memorial Parkway

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Date: October 8, 2019
Contact: Aaron LaRocca, 703-289-2500

McLean, Va.— The National Park Service (NPS) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) will soon begin targeted repairs on the northern section of the George Washington Memorial and Clara Barton parkways. If weather permits, the work will begin tonight, Tuesday, October 8.
 

On the George Washington Memorial Parkway the work will happen between Chain Bridge Road (VA 123) and I-495, the Capital Beltway. On the Clara Barton Parkway work will happen between Chain Bridge and McArthur Blvd. Drivers should expect single lane closures from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. to accommodate the work. The NPS scheduled the work during off-peak hours so that it affects as few drivers as possible.

 

“We’re working this fall so the parkways are ready for winter driving,” Superintendent Charles Cuvelier said. “Even though this work won’t address the entirety of either road, it’s part of the National Park Service’s long-term plan to maintain and eventually reconstruct both the George Washington Memorial and Clara Barton parkways.” 

 

This project will:
 

  • Remove more than 76,000 square yards of the roads’ surface.

  • Place more than 7,000 tons of new asphalt.

  • Level uneven parts of the road.

  • Install new pavement markings.

 

The work will last into late fall with completion depending on the weather in the weeks ahead. 

 

The NPS will continue to compete for federal grants that would fully fund the North Section Parkway Rehabilitation Project. That project would involve full-depth reconstruction of the road, overlook improvements, rehabilitating the parkway’s stone walls and road drainage improvements. 

 

The NPS and FHWA are also continuing work to repair the sinkhole near Dead Run. The FHWA recently finished 50 vertical feet of excavation to remove a 60-year-old brick drainage structure that had failed. Workers are now completing the installation of a new drain and back-filling the excavated area. The NPS anticipates reopening both lanes to traffic in October, but site restoration work during off-peak hours might last longer.

 

The George Washington Memorial Parkway is a scenic roadway and memorial to the first president of the United States. When the NPS completed the northern part of the parkway in 1962, the NPS used the most up-to-date road engineering methods of the time by integrating a wide, gently curving roadway with a grassy median, low stone guide walls and soaring steel-and-concrete arched bridges. Today, more than 33 million vehicles travel the parkway each year, with the northern section seeing the heaviest use.

 

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Last updated: October 8, 2019

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