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National Park Service Closes National Mall Ahead Of Inauguration

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WJZ) -- The National Park Service, in coordination with the U.S. Secret Service, have closed the National Mall to the public starting at 11 a.m. Friday through Jan. 21.

However, permitted First Amendment activities will be allowed in designated locations near U.S. Navy Memorial and John Marshall Park. Up to 100 people will be able to gather and they will be monitored by authorities.

The closure was ordered to ensure safety and security within the area where the 59th presidential inauguration of Joe Biden will take place.

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WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 15: A visitor walks past the mouth of the Lincoln Memorial with the Washington Monument in the distance on the morning of January 15, 2021 in Washington, DC. Due to security threats following the January 6th pro-Trump mob at the US Capitol, law enforcement agencies moved up security measures along the National Mall and much of downtown Washington, D.C. essentially closing down the Mall a week ahead of President-elect Joe Bidens inauguration. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

The affects all NPS properties including the memorials and the facilities bounded by Constitution Avenue, NW to the north; Ohio Drive, SW to the south; the Potomac River to the west; and 3rd Street to the east. The closures extended to President's Park, including Lafayette Park, the Ellipse and the White House complex, as well as East and West Potomac parks, and National Park Service lands along Pennsylvania Avenue.

"We appreciate the cooperation of Mayor Bowser working with Secretary Bernhardt to protect our city during the inaugural period," said Jeff Reinbold, superintendent of National Mall and Memorial Parks. "Working together, the National Park Service, mayor's office, the Metropolitan Police Department, United States Secret Service and all of our local and federal law enforcement and public safety partners, have developed a plan to ensure for the safety of our Nation's capital, city residents and monuments and memorials on the National Mall."


The following areas will be closed to public use:

  • Constitution Ave, NW from Rock Creek Parkway, NW to 17th Street NW, to include the adjacent sidewalks;
  • 17th Street , NW to H Street, NW, to include the adjacent sidewalks;
  • H Street, NW to 15th Street, NW, to include adjacent sidewalks;
  • 15th Street, NW to Pennsylvania Avenue, NW to include adjacent sidewalks;
  • Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, from 15th Street, NW to 3rd Street, SW, and adjacent sidewalks (except for designated areas for First Amendment activities to be overseen by the National Park Service and United States Park Police);
  • 3rd Street, SW, from Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, to Independence Avenue, SW, and adjacent sidewalks;
  • Independence Avenue, SW, from 3rd Street, SW, to Ohio Drive, SW, and adjacent sidewalks; and
  • Ohio Drive, SW, to Rock Creek Parkway, NW, and adjacent sidewalks;

In support of this effort, the National Park Service is also temporarily closing to the public the following roadways and park areas:

  • East and West Potomac Parks including Hains Point, all memorials and NPS areas contained within;
    On and off ramps to Potomac Park, from I-395 N and I-395;
  • Lincoln Memorial Circle including all adjacent sidewalks and roadways;
  • Memorial Bridge, from Washington Boulevard to Lincoln Memorial Circle, including all adjacent sidewalks; and
  • The White House Complex, all of Lafayette Park and the White House sidewalk, the Ellipse, First Division Park, and Sherman Park.

People in and around Washington, D.C. are encouraged so signup for updates on public safety, street closures, weather alerts, transit updates and more via Nixle text alerts from the DC Government. Text INAUG2021 to 888-777 to sign up.

Additional information is available online at

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