The National Park Service (NPS) announced that Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House will be shut down through March 2020 for the completion of the White House fence construction.
The expanded closure, which is scheduled to start on August 21, covers the area between West Executive Avenue and East Executive Avenue. The NPS cited “public safety” and protection of pedestrians and cyclists for the decision, as heavy machinery and large vehicles are being used as part of the construction work for a taller fence around the White House.
According the NPS’ press release, certain parts will remain open to pedestrians and cyclists, which are Lafayette Park, the north sidewalk of Pennsylvania Avenue, Jackson Place NW and Madison Place NW.
Before and after look from Pennsylvania Avenue. Currently, the fence is 8 feet tall and there is a movable buffer on the sidewalk. After the renovation, the fence will be approximately 13 feet tall and the buffer will be removed. pic.twitter.com/7qhpLgupTr
— Mark J. Westpfahl (@MarkJWestpfahl) August 20, 2019
“Pedestrians and cyclists are encouraged to use caution on the north sidewalk of Pennsylvania Avenue due to increased foot and bike traffic,” the release added.
The project for building a taller fence for the White House kicked off on July 8 and is aiming to improve security. The new fence will be around 13 feet tall, while the previous one was six-foot-six-inch. The construction is expected to last until 2021.
We only need to do this because Trump lives there https://t.co/hLFxiqMd6N
— David (@vickewhite) August 20, 2019
“The USSS [United States Secret Service] and NPS have been working since 2014 to develop an appropriate barrier that will keep the White House and grounds as accessible as possible to the public while ensuring the security of the White House and its occupants,” the NPS explained in the release.