March for Life Could Snarl Traffic Friday

It may also be an event the squeamish want to avoid

The weather may not be the only reason it's hard to get around the District Friday.

Thousands of demonstrators will be converging on Washington for the 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision which legalized abortion. Several downtown streets are being temporarily shut down for the March for Life event, which has been taking place every year since 1974. Fourteen Metrobus lines are also being rerouted due to the rally.

In addition to its traffic backup potential, it may also be an event the squeamish want to avoid. As We Love DC notes:

In past years, uninterested bystanders, pedestrians and drivers have been subject to large billboards and signs of grisly images of aborted fetuses on the drive to work, so if you’re sensitive to that kind of imagery, you might want to arrange not to come up 14th Street tomorrow, or be on the Metro first thing in the morning.

From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., these roads will be closed:

  • 7th Street between I and F streets, NW
  • F Street between 7th and 10th streets, NW
  • 10th Street between F Street and Constitution Avenue, NW
  • Constitution Avenue between 10th and 12th streets, NW
  • 7th Street between Constitution Avenue and Jefferson Street, NW
  • Constitution between 7th Street, NW and First Street, NE
  • First Street between Constitution Avenue, NE and East Capitol Street, SE

The D.C. Department of Transportation says it expects heavy pedestrian traffic throughout the day, including after the events conclude around 5 p.m.


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Minor traffic delays are also expected on Independence and Constitution Avenues, as well as roadways near the Smithsonian, L’Enfant Plaza and Federal Triangle Metro stations. 

In addition, Metro says customers using these bus lines should add additional time to their travel:

  • From 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Friday, Jan. 22, Metrobus routes 32, 34, 36, 42, 54, 63, 64, 70, D6, P2, P6, S2 and S4 will be detoured due to street closures at F St., NW, 10th St. Constitution Ave., and 12th St. to the National Mall.
  • From noon to 5 p.m., Metrobus routes 32, 34, 36, 54, 70, 96, P2 and P6 will be detoured due to street closures at 1st St., NE/SE, between Constitution and Independence Ave. 
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