UPDATE: CQ Magazine: Park Service Backs Off Plan to Restrict Sports on National Mall

CQ Magazine is reporting that the National Park Service has dropped a controversial proposal that would have banned sports on the National Mall.

Park service spokesman Brian Hall told reporter Jonathan Miller “no decision will be made until extensive planning and coordination has occurred. Nothing changes from the current way we are operating.”

Coalition chair Judy Scott Feldman is also quoted in the article, saying “we are killing the life of the Mall when you have people not using it.”

Those familiar with the National Mall Coalition’s mission know that this has been a hot button issue since it was announced back in November of 2018.

Here was our response to the initial proposal.

In June, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton held a town meeting in which our Chair participated and offered prepared remarks.

Her purpose in holding the meeting, Congresswoman Norton explained, was “to facilitate a productive conversation and identify creative solutions that respect NPS’s goals of protecting recent turf renovations on the National Mall, while also ensuring that the Mall remains open and accessible for engagement and activities.”


UPDATE: Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton responds


According to the CQ Magazine article, the National Park Service is now preparing to “conduct a formal study to come up with a comprehensive new plan” and that “once the plan is finalized it will make it available for public comment.” NPS acting superintendent Patricia Trap “agreed to listen to concerns from stakeholders before proceeding.”

This is great news. The next step is to make that formal study an open and deliberative process, by bringing to the table the National Park Service, sports groups, and other Mall stakeholders, to develop the creative solutions that will protect public use of the Mall, the “Stage for American Democracy,” by local residents and by all Americans.


Photo Gallery: Sports and recreation on the National Mall

  • (Photograph courtesy of Library of Congress)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of Library of Congress)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of Library of Congress)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of Library of Congress)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
  • (Photograph courtesy of DC Fray)
 

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