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Construction begins on Rock Creek Trail rehabilitation and pedestrian bridge

Construction started for the rehabilitation of the Rock Creek Park Trail and the new pedestrian bridge.

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) and National Park Service (NPS) will rehabilitate and construct more than 3.7 miles of the paved, multi-use trail spanning Wards 1, 2, 3, and 4 from M St. NW in Georgetown to Broad Branch Rd. NW.

The project consists of significant storm drain improvements, reconstruction of an existing retaining wall, streambank stabilization, trail reconstruction and widening with permeable pavement. The upgraded trail will be between 8 and 10 feet wide and the surface material used will be dense mix asphalt and porous asphalt. These improvements will help drain stormwater from the project and result in reduced erosion and trail maintenance.

A key feature of the project is a new 110-foot pedestrian bridge just south of the existing Beach Drive tunnel near the Smithsonian National Zoo. The new bridge will move bicyclists and pedestrians away from the current narrow sidewalk directly adjacent to the travel lanes on Rock Creek Parkway to a safer, dedicated path that will improve connectivity between the Rock Creek Park Multi-Use Trail and the Zoo Loop Trail.

The project will repair the streambank and trail that previously collapsed near the National Zoo and will also add nearly one mile of newly constructed trail alongside Piney Branch Parkway between Beach Drive and Arkansas Avenue NW, providing new and safe access to the park and trails.

Construction activities will be conducted in seven phases expected to be completed in spring 2023 and will require periodic closures of park trails and Beach Drive.

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