Coronavirus spread concerns close major segment of National Mall, roads around Tidal Basin

A significant section of the National Mall is now closed due to concerns about the spread of coronavirus.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced via press release Sunday night that she was closing the National Mall to pedestrians and bicycle traffic between Independence Ave. SW and Constitution Avenue N.W. and 14th Street and 23rd Street.

That’s the stretch that runs from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument, and also includes the World War II Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Korean War Veterans Memorial.

The boundaries will be enforced by the Metropolitan Police Department and the D.C. National Guard.

The restriction will be in place, according to the release, “until further notice to ensure social distancing and prevent community transmission of COVID-19.”

In addition, a number of roads around the Tidal Basin will remain closed.

The Map below shows the area with closed roadways:

A map provided by the District of Columbia showing restricted roads around the Tidal Basin.

Starting Monday at 7 a.m., the following roads will be closed:

  • The Memorial Bridge
  • Lincoln Memorial Circle
  • Potomac River Freeway (all exits to Ohio Drive and Independence Avenue)
  • Rock Creek Parkway/Potomac Parkway Drive (between Virginia Avenue and Independence SW)
  • Independence Avenue between Ohio Drive and 14th Street SW
  • 23rd Street between Constitution Avenue and Lincoln Memorial Circle
  • Henry Bacon Drive between Constitution Avenue NW and Independence Avenue SW
  • 17th Street between Constitution Avenue NW and Independence Avenue SW
  • 15th Street between Constitution Avenue NW and Independence Avenue SW
  • Maine Avenue between Independence and 12th Street SW
  • All vehicular exits to East Potomac Park and West Potomac Park

The National Park Service strongly urges people against visiting the Tidal Basin in order to help flatten the curve and help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Lately, social distancing has not been possible due to high visitor volume.

The cherry blossoms reached peak bloom Friday.

See a map generally showing the restricted area below.



Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2020 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Dan Friedell

Dan Friedell is a digital writer for WTOP. He came to the D.C. area in 2007 to work as digital editor for, and since then has worked for a number of local and national news organizations.

Federal News Network Logo

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up