Inauguaral clampdown on cars
WASHINGTON – The million or more people expected in Washington for Barack Obama’s presidential inauguration might want to wear comfortable shoes and be prepared for a whole lot of walking.
Private vehicles will not be able to get anywhere near the action on Jan. 20, when Obama is sworn in as president, under a plan to help with crowd management detailed by the U.S. Secret Service on Wednesday.
Cars will be banned on major bridges connecting Virginia to Washington.
Streets will be closed across a broad section in the middle of the city. Visitors’ best bets for getting around will be public transportation, bicycles or walking.
The Washington Post reported that the street closings were necessary to help manage the record crowds that are expected for the inauguration and to make space for charter buses that will bring many people to the city.
When you’re done walking through the secured car-free zone, those comfortable shoes will come in handy while you wait to pass through security screenings along the inaugural parade route and at the inaugural balls.
“Please allow for additional time for this security screening, as it is expected that lines may be long,” the Secret Service advises.
The latest estimates of the number of people expected to converge on Washington range from at least 1.5 million to more than 3 million, the Post said.
– Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing (Briefing on inauguration logistics, Dec. 18)