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Contact: Ethan Alpern, 202-619-7186
Contact: Jenny Anzelmo-Sarles, 202-619-7177
WASHINGTON -- Get ready, get set, and go for a smoother and safer drive on the southern section of Beach Drive. The newly reconstructed road and paved multi-use trail between Rock Creek & Potomac Parkway and Tilden Street NW are expected to reopen on August 28, pending any weather delays. New closures and associated detours will go into effect immediately after Segment 1 reopens.
On or about August 28, Beach Drive will close from Tilden Street NW to Joyce Road NW, which is just south of Military Road NW. Drivers are encouraged to start testing new routes in advance of the change. Updated maps and information are available online at go.nps.gov/beachdrive.
Ross Drive and Ridge Road, which both run through the park and are parallel to Beach Drive will also be closed to vehicle traffic until Fall 2018. The closure provides greater safety for the many bike commuters who will need to detour on these narrow, winding and hilly routes; will reduce traffic impacts to local neighborhoods; and will provide an alternate location for weekend recreation in lieu of Beach Drive.
Traffic management experts and the District Department of Transportation will be monitoring traffic flow and making adjustments to detour routes and stop light timing as needed.
Though the next two segments of the roadway will close on the same date, the NPS will reopen Beach Drive between Park Road/Tilden Street NW and Broad Branch Road/Blagden Avenue NW once work is complete on this short section. Work on Segment 2 (Tilden Street to Broad Branch Road) includes significant repairs to the Blagden bridge and is expected to take less than six months to complete. Segment 3, which runs from just north of the Blagden Avenue bridge to just south of Military Road will remain closed to traffic until Fall 2018.
On Sunday, August 20, Rock Creek Park and Rock Creek Conservancy are hosting a block party for residents and neighbors to walk and ride on the newly reconstructed section of Beach Drive before it reopens to vehicles. The party will begin at 1 p.m. at the Smithsonian's National Zoo entrance on Beach Drive (by Harvard Street NW) and go until 4 p.m. Beginning at noon, limited free parking for the event will be available at the Zoo in parking lot E.
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About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparks