WASHINGTON — The National Park Service will limit access to D.C.'s Tidal Basin during peak bloom of the cherry blossoms in 2021 because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Mike Litterst, spokesperson for the National Park Service, said in a release Tuesday that the restrictions were in accordance with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and DC Health and in consultation with the National Park Service Office of Public Health.
"The National Park Service will limit all vehicular and pedestrian access to the Tidal Basin, East Potomac Park and West Potomac Park during the peak bloom period of the cherry blossoms as a public health precaution to mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Litterst said in a release.
This year, peak bloom is expected between April 2-5, but the park service said restrictions will be in place from March 26 through April 12. The park service said those dates could change depending on how the bloom cycle actually happens. Updates or changes to the restriction dates will be posted on the National Park Service's social media pages @NationalMallNPS.
Closed roads and areas will include:
- Ohio Drive SW, from Buckeye Drive SW (Washington Channel side) to Independence Avenue SW
- East Basin Drive SW east of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial to Ohio Drive SW
- West Basin Drive SW from Ohio Drive SW to Independence Avenue SW
- Tidal Basin walking trail
- Northbound I-395 ramp to Potomac Park (Exit 2)
- Southbound I-395 ramp to Potomac Park (Exit 2)
- Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial
- Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial
- Thomas Jefferson Memorial
- Tidal Basin paddle boats
- All curbside parking and parking lots within the closure
The National Park Service encourages those who want to take in the splendor of the cherry blossoms at peak bloom to do so virtually via its website, here.