Many D.C. streets closing for U.S.-Africa summit next week

An international gathering is going to close streets, restrict parking, detour buses and generally add to commuting difficulties on the west side of the District next week.

The centers of activity during the U.S.–Africa Leaders Summit will be in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood, around the White House and in Southwest Washington north of Maine Avenue and east of the Tidal Basin. Key events will be held at the National Academy of Sciences, the World Bank, the White House and the Mandarin Oriental hotel.

Many streets will be closed in those areas at various times from Sunday through Wednesday, and parking will be restricted.

Bridges and highways will remain open. All Metrorail stations are scheduled to remain open too, but nearly two dozen Metrobus routes will be detoured. MetroAccess may not be able to provide paratransit service to some spots within the security areas.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management has advised federal agencies to encourage telecommuting and adjusting work schedules because of the likelihood of traffic congestion.

I’ll list all the street closings and restrictions below. Extensive as they are, they won’t fully capture the potential for traffic disruptions. Reggie Sanders, spokesman for the District Department of Transportation, said “motorists should pay close attention to motorcades and short-term road closures.” They also should watch out for delays caused by street protests and for extra heavy pedestrian traffic near the summit events.

“Driving downtown probably will not be a good idea during this period, because there will be a lot of rolling closures” on streets, Sanders said.

“It’s one of those events that is typical of our city, and we ask people to just be patient, try to be very aware that these things are happening and plan,” he said.

Andy Litsky, a member of the District’s Advisory Neighborhood Commission for the Southwest Waterfront, sent a heads-up about the summit to local residents in which he noted that the Nationals are home at Nationals Park throughout the event. Along with the restrictions on Maine Avenue SW and nearby streets, the baseball traffic could put an additional burden on the Waterfront neighborhood. Those Maine Avenue details are among the closings and restrictions listed below. But first, a Metro summary.

“We are not expecting any effect on Metrorail whatsoever,” said Metro spokesman Morgan Dye. “Riders in and around Foggy Bottom may notice additional Metro Transit Police officers at certain times, but that’s about it.”

Metrobus is another matter. Detour plans still are being made final. They will be posted on Metro’s Web site and e-mailed to MetroAlerts subscribers soon, Dye said. What follows is a summary of the routes that Metro now knows will be affected by the street or lane closings.

Metrobus
Expect delays Monday and Tuesday on Metrobus Routes L1 and H1 trips to Potomac Park.

From 10 p.m. Monday until 6 p.m. Tuesday, Route 52 will detour via Independence Avenue and Route V7 will turn back at L’Enfant Plaza.

On Tuesday until 11 p.m., expect delays on Routes 32 and 36 trips to Archives and Southeast Washington.

Tuesday until 11 p.m., Routes P17, P19 and W13 will originate on Pennsylvania Avenue west of 17th Street NW.

These routes will be affected on Wednesday.

Expect delays in the morning on Routes 3Y and 16Y to Farragut Square.

Routes 80 and H1 will require detours. Morning trips on Routes 32, 36 and N3 also will be detoured. Afternoon trips on Routes L1, H1, S1 and X1 will be detoured.

Morning trips on Route H1 will detour. Afternoon trips on Routes L1 and H1 will detour.

Expect delays on Route 80 trips to the Kennedy Center and S1 trips to Potomac Park.

Routes 31, 80 and morning trips on Route S1 will detour.

Street closings

Starting Sunday
29th St. NW between K St. NW and M St. NW
F St. NW between 14th St. NW and 15th St. NW
Southbound curb lane on 23rd St. NW from E St. NW to Constitution Ave. NW
29th St. NW between the Canal Channel and M St. NW

Starting Monday
22nd St. NW between C St. NW and Constitution Ave.

Desales St. NW between Connecticut Ave. NW and 17th St.

Maine Ave. SW westbound between 9th St. SW and 12th St. SW

Maine Ave. SW eastbound between Ohio Dr. SW and 9th St. SW

Maine Ave./Frontage Rd. between the Mandarin Oriental hotel and 14th St. SW/D St. SW

Maine Ave. ramp between the Southwest Freeway and 14th St. SW

D St. SW between 12th St. SW and 14th St. SW

12th St. SW between Independence Ave. and Maine Ave., restricted to visitors with official business and business owners and employees

13th St. SW between C St. SW and D St. SW

Starting Tuesday
Maryland Ave. SW will be eastbound only from 12th St. SW for vehicles exiting parking garages off 12th St. south of Maryland Ave.

The southbound curb lane on 15th St. NW will be closed between H St. NW and E St. NW\Pennsylvania Ave. NW

The northbound curb lane on 17th St. NW will be closed between C St. NW and H St. NW

Wednesday
Constitution Ave. westbound ramp between 23rd St NW and Rock Creek Parkway to the Roosevelt Bridge will be closed.

Constitution Ave. eastbound ramp from E St. (exit off the Roosevelt Bridge) to 23rd St. will be closed. All traffic must exit onto Independence Ave. and proceed to the Tidal Basin to 17th St. NW, continuing on Independence Ave. eastbound or Ohio Dr. eastbound.

The two outermost lanes on the westbound side of Constitution Ave. will be closed from 19th St. NW to Henry Bacon Dr. till 6:30 p.m. The eastbound side will be open with lane restrictions to Henry Bacon.

Westbound traffic on Constitution Ave. will be forced onto Henry Bacon Dr. and over the Arlington Memorial Bridge. Arlington Memorial Bridge and Rock Creek Parkway will funnel through Lincoln Memorial Circle to Henry Bacon Ave. to Constitution.

From noon to 2:30 p.m., Constitution Ave. will be closed in both directions between 17th St. NW and 23rd St. NW. Traffic southbound from 18th/19th St. will be allowed to flow eastbound on Constitution Ave. NW during this time.

Virginia Ave. will be eastbound only between 23rd St. NW and 18th St. NW from noon to 6:30 p.m. Virginia Ave. westbound will remain open.

C St. NW will be closed between Virginia Ave. NW and 23rd St. NW from till 6:30 p.m.

D St. NW will be closed between the E St. Expressway and Virginia Ave. NW till 6:30 p.m.

The southbound curb lane on 19th St. NW will be closed between E St. NW and Virginia Ave. till 6:30 p.m.

20th St. NW between C St. NW and Constitution Ave. will be closed till 6 p.m.

21st St. NW between C St. NW and Constitution Ave. NW will be closed till 6:30 p.m.

21st St. NW between E St. NW and Virginia Ave. NW will be closed till 6:30 p.m.

22nd St. NW will be closed between C St. NW and Constitution Ave. till 6:30 p.m.

23rd St. NW will be closed between Lincoln Memorial Circle NW and E St. NW till 6:30 p.m.

Robert Thomson is The Washington Post’s “Dr. Gridlock.” He answers travelers’ questions, listens to their complaints and shares their pain on the roads, trains and buses in the Washington region.
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