WASHINGTON — As the temperatures warm up, cherry blossom lovers are warming up for their big moment.
Blooming blossoms will lure locals and out-of-towners to the National Mall and Tidal Basin during this year’s National Cherry Blossom Festival (March 20–April 15).
The crowd size could be a bit more humanity than you’re accustomed to. The good news is you have several options for getting around there. Whether it’s four wheels, two wheels, trains or boats, you have flexibility. Here’s some guidance so you can strategize accordingly.
Pooling vehicles can lower fleet costs for some agencies. But what about eliminating those vehicles altogether? Washington, D.C., is an area known for its congestion. The capital is not very large, but it’s bustling with people, and parking can be hard to come by.
D.C. employees can use an assigned fleet vehicle, or rent one from Fleet Share, the district motor pool. But Fleet Share’s 97 vehicles are first come, first serve, and not always available for the district’s 33,000 employees. Limited parking spots can also mean circling the block looking for an empty space and paying for parking, which can add up quickly.
“While we love our job and we love what we are able to do, the fewer district vehicles on the road, the better,” said Washington, D.C., Department of Public Works Director Christopher Shorter.
The week between Christmas and New Year’s is one of the most fun and celebrated times of the year. It is also one of the most dangerous holidays of the year for drivers and passengers. Between Christmas and New Year’s Day, the average number of fatalities involving alcohol-impaired drivers increases by 34 percent in the U.S.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that during Christmas and New Year’s season, nearly 95 million Americans will be on the road traveling to visit family and friends. This elevated number of vehicles combined with an increased number of parties and celebrations often times leads to more impaired drivers on the roadways.
People are much more likely to drive impaired around Jan. 1 than during any other major holiday of the year. In fact, almost half of all car crashes on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are due to an impaired driver.
The District is testing a novel way of helping struggling cab drivers while transporting city government employees back and forth from their assignments more efficiently, saving money at the same time.