Got plans for the Fourth? If they include partying on the Mall with tens of thousands of your closest friends, here’s a heads up about how to get there this year.
If you plan to go, don’t plan to find a whole lot of parking near the Mall. Parking will be extremely limited throughout the area of the Capitol, President’s Park, the George Washington Parkway and the Mall and Memorial Parks, according to the National Park Service.
If you really want to make a relaxing day of it, both the NPS and the WMATA say you should bike it or take public transportation. Nearby Metro stations include Federal Triangle, Foggy Bottom, Metro Center, Gallery Place-Chinatown, Farragut North, Farragut West, Capitol South, L’Enfant Plaza, Union Station, Federal Center S.W. and Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter.
If you plan to hop on your bike, there'll be free bike valet parking this year. The Park Service is teaming up with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association to provide valet parking from 2-10:30 p.m. between 14th and 15th streets on Independence Avenue, SW.
If you still chose to burn gas getting to the fireworks show, be aware of some changes in your parking options this year. You won't be allowed to park on the shoulders of the GW Parkway. No exceptions! Violate that rule this year and you will likely end up meeting your neighborhood tow truck driver.
You can park for free on a first-come-first-served basis at Theodore Roosevelt Island, Gravelly Point, and Daingerfield Island. Bring your RV or trailer and you’ll have to park it at Gravelly Point. There’ll be one designated parking area next to the GW Parkway -- a grassy lot south of Memorial Circle.
Or you can park it in the Pentagon’s north parking lot across from Columbia Island. The pedestrian bridge from the North Pentagon parking area to Lyndon Baines Johnson Memorial Grove/Columbia Island Marina will be open this year. However, because of construction on the Humpback Bridge, there’ll be no pedestrian crossing of the GW Parkway to the Potomac Riverfront via Columbia Island.
Temporary Road Closures for July 4, 2010:
- Arlington Memorial Bridge to Memorial Circle on the Virginia end of the bridge;
- Rock Creek Parkway south of Virginia Avenue, NW to Lincoln Memorial Circle, including all approaches and ramps;
- Lincoln Memorial Circle and all approaches and ramps into and out of Lincoln Memorial Circle, including Henry Bacon Drive, NW and Daniel Chester French Drive, SW;
- Ramp from Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Bridge to Constitution Avenue, NW and Ohio Drive, SW;
- Inbound traffic on I-66 will be directed to the E Street Expressway;
- Constitution Avenue, NW from 23rd Street, NW to 14th Street, NW;
- Constitution Avenue, NW from Pennsylvania Avenue, NW to 14th Street, NW, starting at 11:00 a.m.;
- 19th, 20th, 21st and 22nd Streets, NW between Constitution Avenue, NW and C Street, NW;
- 18th Street, NW between Constitution Avenue, NW and Virginia Avenue, NW;
- Virginia Avenue, NW between Constitution Avenue, NW and 18th Street, NW;
- 17th Street, NW from E Street, NW south to Independence Avenue, SW;
- C and D Streets, NW from 17th to 18th Streets, NW;
- 15th Street, NW from E Street, NW south to Raoul Wallenberg Place, SW;
- Raoul Wallenberg Place, SW to Maine Avenue, SW;
- Independence Avenue, SW west of 14th Street, SW to 23rd Street, SW, including merge with Rock Creek Parkway;
- Madison Drive, NW from 15th Street, NW to 3rd Street. NW;
- Jefferson Drive, SW from 15th Street, SW to 3rd Street, SW;
- 7th Street, NW between Constitution Avenue, NW and Independence Avenue, SW;
- 4th Street, NW between Constitution Avenue, NW and Independence Avenue, SW;
- Ohio Drive, SW from the Inlet Bridge to Independence Avenue, SW;
- West Basin Drive, SW from Ohio Drive, SW to Independence Avenue, SW;
- East Basin Drive, SW, east of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial at Ohio Drive, SW;
- 3rd Street, NW between Pennsylvania Avenue, NW and Maryland Avenue, SW;
- 14th Street, NW between Pennsylvania Avenue, NW and Independence Avenue, SW will be closed at 11:00 a.m. until after the fireworks;
- Ramp from southbound and northbound George Washington Memorial Parkway (GWMP) to Memorial Avenue /Circle;
- Ramp from northbound Route 110 to Memorial Avenue;
- Ramp from VA-27 to Memorial Avenue/Circle;
- Eastbound Route 50 ramps to the George Washington Memorial Parkway (GWMP) and roads in the immediate area of U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial;
- Southbound GWMP ramp to 14th Street Bridge;
- Northbound GWMP ramp to 14th Street Bridge.