Closures surrounding D.C.’s Emancipation Day celebration

A group of parade attendees gathers under a man waving the flag of the District. (WTOP/Megan Cloherty)

WASHINGTON – Police are alerting drivers to expect road closures downtown for the Emancipation Day parade, festival and fireworks display Wednesday.

The closures will start at Freedom Plaza at E and 14th streets and run down Pennsylvania Avenue and surrounding streets from Federal Triangle toward the National Gallery of Art from roughly 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Constitution Avenue will see closures for parade staging in front of the National Archives from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.


The area around Freedom Plaza will be closed the entire day — from the early morning hours until just before midnight — for the Emancipation Day festival and fireworks.

Finally, 12th Street will be closed between E Street and Constitution Avenue from from 8:30 to 9:45 p.m. for the fireworks show.

Here are the closures in detail, from the D.C. police:

  • Pennsylvania Avenue and the surrounding streets will be closed between 3rd and 14th streets NW from approximately 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Constitution Avenue and the surrounding streets will be closed for staging for the parade between 9th Street and the west crossover at Pennsylvania Avenue NW from approximately 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Pennsylvania Avenue and the surrounding streets will be closed between 12th and 14th streets NW from 4 a.m. to 11 p.m. for the Emancipation Day Festival and fireworks.
  • E Street will be closed between 13th and 14th streets NW from 4 a.m. to 11 p.m. for the Emancipation Day Festival vendors.
  • 12th Street will also be closed between E Street and Constitution Avenue NW from 8:30 to 9:45 p.m. for the fireworks display.

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