Water returns to the C&O Canal in Georgetown

Water has returned to the section of the C&O Canal that runs through Georgetown in D.C.

The one-mile picturesque section of the waterway had been under construction as part of a larger restoration project, and included “complicated things like giant wall stabilizations and lock repairs,” the Georgetown Business Improvement District said in a statement.

The National Park Service has been working with the Georgetown community and local organizations on developing a re-imagined plan for the area.

With some of the major construction now completed, Georgetown Heritage, a nonprofit organization that partners with the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park to rebuild the section of the canal, is preparing for next steps.

A canal boat replica is scheduled to arrive soon, and begin operation during the summer. The boat is modeled on designs for historic packet boats that were used on the canal during its early years of service, said Christiana Hanson, chief of Interpretation at C&O Canal National Historic Park, said in a statement.

The water in the canal may rise and fall over the next few months to allow for repairs on the boat’s dry dock.

“The rewatering of the canal in Georgetown is part of our normal summer operations. Throughout the next few weeks, water levels in the canal in Georgetown will vary intermittently to accommodate preparations of the canal for full rewatering in Summer 2021,” Hanson said.

Other work that’s being done on the canal this summer includes repairing lock gates, installing boat utilities for the new water craft, repairing a dry dock near the 31st Street Bridge and installing a temporary kayak dock east of the 34th Street pedestrian bridge.

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Julie Gallagher

Julie Gallagher is a freelance digital writer and editor for WTOP.com. She previously covered the 2020 election with CNN and has bylines in The Lily, WIRED, NBC Washington, The Baltimore Sun, Washington City Paper and more.

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