Driving Conditions

On This Page Navigation

Construction equipment and orange barrels and fencing and a detour sign at the zoo tunnel.
Beach Drive construction, 2016


The National Park Service (NPS) manages more than 265 miles of paved roads in the Greater Washington area. These roads, along with more than 290 miles of trails, are vital links in the region’s transportation network. Their maintenance is a priority for the NPS.

Every year, we repave dozens of miles of roads, and NPS maintenance workers fill potholes, plow snow, remove trash, mow grass, and clean drains to ensure drivers’ trips are safe and smooth. Unfortunately, the reality is that this is not enough.

Across the United States, the NPS faces a maintenance backlog of more than $11.9 billion. This total refers to repairs NPS has had to delay due to lack of funding. In the Greater Washington area, our maintenance backlog is nearly $2 billion, $900 million of which is for vital transportation systems.

Current transportation work

The NPS schedules road and trail work where we know the need is greatest. This means that it is a top priority to improve conditions on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, George Washington Memorial Parkway, and Clara Barton Parkway. It also means we follow through on projects like the rehabilitation of Beach Drive and Arlington Memorial Bridge.

Your neighborhood national parks are part of a network that provides unique opportunities for fun and learning to more than 300 million visitors every year.

Take a look at the DC Parks Map to learn how to get in touch with the park responsible for the roads you use, and learn how to file a claim if your car was damaged while driving on a national park road.

Report road conditions

Contact us to report road conditions. For the fastest service, contact the park directly. If you aren’t sure which park administers the area you are interested in, use the map to see the national park’s name and contact information.

File a damage claim

Please contact your insurance company first to get the information you will need to complete the claim form for damages related to travel on a National Park Service road. Once you’ve done that, please email ncr_tortclaims@nps.gov the following information:

A completed Standard Form 95 (front and back)
  • Box 1 should read:
    National Park Service
    National Capital Region
    1100 Ohio Drive SW, Washington, DC 20242
  • On the form, be sure to include your name as well as:
  1. Description of your vehicle
  2. Description of damage
  3. Date and time the damage occurred
  4. Location where the damage occurred
    (For example: northbound George Washington Memorial Parkway at Chain Bridge Road (VA 123))

When you send the form, please also enclose (or electronically attach):

  • A copy of your vehicle registration
  • And EITHER
    • Two (2) estimates showing the anticipated cost for repairs
    • A paid invoice for damage repairs

After you file a claim, you will receive a written response with a determination by certified mail.

Please be aware that processing a claim can take up to six months. Filing a claim does not necessarily mean the government will approve it.

Last updated: August 20, 2019