News Release

National Park Service to implement traffic safety improvements in East Potomac Park

Conceptual photo of vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists on a tree-lined road

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News Release Date: November 29, 2022

Contact: Mike Litterst

UPDATE - Installation of the dedicated bike and pedestrian lane begins on July 6, 2023. The road will remain open during the work, but there will be rotating closures of the parking areas around EPP as the work progresses. The work is expected to last six weeks.

WASHINGTON – In order to improve pedestrian, cyclist and motorist safety in East Potomac Park, the National Park Service will replace one vehicle travel lane on Ohio Drive from the East Potomac Golf Course to Hains Point and back to Buckeye Drive with a new, dedicated bicycle and pedestrian lane. The work, which was first proposed in April with a public meeting and comment period, is expected to begin in early December in partnership with the District Department of Transportation.

When completed, the left lane of the 2.5-mile drive around Hains Point will be for motor vehicles, and the right lane will become a bi-directional shared-use path for cyclists and pedestrians. This final design represents a slight modification from the original concept, which proposed one-way bike and walk lanes, after incorporating suggestions from public comments. Experienced cyclists may choose to use the vehicle travel lane, which will be marked with vehicle/bicycle shared lane symbols (“sharrows”).

"These changes will provide a safer park experience for all visitors by prioritizing safety and reducing conflicts between people who walk, bicycle and drive, while continuing to provide for the fullest range of uses of East Potomac Park,” said Jeff Reinbold, superintendent of National Mall and Memorial Parks. “We look forward to rebuilding the seawalls and reestablishing a separate pedestrian walkway in the future.”

In addition to the shared-use path, this project includes the following design elements:
  • Angled parking on Ohio Drive at Hains Point will be replaced with parallel parking. The shared use path will be protected behind parked cars.
  • All bus traffic, including motorcoaches and school buses, will be prohibited on Ohio Drive past the East Potomac Golf Course. 
  • The “no parking” zone on Ohio Drive between the 14th Street Bridge and Long Bridge will be replaced with two, six-foot-wide bike lanes.
  • The intersection of East Basin Drive and Ohio Drive at Inlet Bridge will become a three-way stop with a left-turn pocket added for eastbound bicyclists on Ohio Drive to the George Mason Memorial, connecting to the 15th Street cycle track and Mount Vernon Trail.

Map of East Potomac Park showing areas to receive traffic safety improvements
Completion of the work is expected to take approximately one week and East Potomac Park will be closed to all motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. The project is the result of planning and collaboration between the National Park Service, the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the District Department of Transportation, and is part of a larger collaboration to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety and access in and around Washington, D.C.

Additional information about the project, including the Final Concept Presentation and other planning documents are available at:


Last updated: July 6, 2023

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