DC.gov Mayor Fenty DC Guide Residents Business Visitors District of Columbia Government Kids  



Q.  What are the hours of operation for the MetroAccess service?

A.  MetroAccess will operate identical hours to Metrorail and Metrobus over the Inauguration Weekend and through Inauguration Day.

Q.  What schedule will Metrobus operate on January 20th?

A.  Metrobus will operate on a “modified” Saturday schedule. Please visit Metro for detailed information.

Q.  Will any Metrorail stations be closed on January 20th?

A.  The US Secret Service has deemed the Inauguration as a special national security event and due to security measures, the Archives-Navy Memorial/Penn Quarter Metrorail station on Metro's Green and Yellow Lines and the Smithsonian Metrorail station on the Blue and Orange Lines, will be closed all day on Inauguration Day, Tuesday, January 20.

Q.  Will parking be free at Metrorail operated lots?

A.  Parking will be free at all Metrorail operated lots from Saturday, January 17 through Monday, January 19, 2009. On Tuesday, January 20, Metro will charge $4 (cash only) at all Metrorail parking facilities.

Q.  Will any of the Metro parking lots be unavailable to private motorists on January 20, 2009?

A. Yes. On Inauguration Day, there will be Metro employee parking only at the Minnesota Avenue Metrorail station.

Q.  What are the hours of operation for Metrorail on January 20th?

A.  Metrorail will operate rush hour service for 17 consecutive hours (4 a.m. to 9 p.m.), will stay open for two extra hours (until 2 am), charge $4 for parking at its facilities and will be one important transportation alternative for people who are planning to attend the Inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama on Tuesday, January 20, 2009.

Q.  What are the average temperatures for the Inauguration?

A.  According to the National Weather Service, the normal high temperature during the Inauguration is in the low to mid 40s and the normal low temperature is in the mid to upper 20s.

Q.  Will the Government be open on Inauguration Day?

A.  No. DC and federal government offices will be closed January 19 in observance of the Dr. Martin Luther King holiday and January 20 in observance of Inauguration Day.

Q.  Will DC Public Schools be open on Inauguration Day?

A.  No. DC Public Schools will be closed January 19 in observance of the Dr. Martin Luther King holiday and January 20 in observance of Inauguration Day.

Q.  How can I receive emergency information during the Inauguration?

A.  To receive emergency text alerts about transportation, weather, and other hazards, sign up for Alert DC.

Q.  How can I participate in the Inaugural Parade and related events?

A.  Contact the Armed Forces Inaugural Committee to learn more about participating and applying for the Inaugural Parade and related events.

Q.  How can I obtain tickets to official inaugural events?

A. Tickets for the Inaugural Swearing-In ceremony will be distributed in January 2009 by both Senators and Representatives of the 111th Congress. Please contact your Senator or Representative to request tickets.

If you live in the District, please visit Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton’s webpage.

There is no ticket required to stand along the parade route for the Inaugural Parade on January 20, 2009. Early arrival is strongly suggested.

Q.  When will the security perimeter be activated and what area will it encompass? Where will the checkpoints be and when will they open?

A.  We do not have this information yet. The Secret Service will make this determination in concert with the Presidential Inauguration Committee and has assured us that we will be notified of the boundaries of the security perimeter, when it will be activated and the opening hours for the checkpoints as soon as these decisions have been made.

Q.  How do I sign up to volunteer for the Inauguration?

A.  Registration for Inauguraion volunteers is now closed.



Short Term Rental FAQs


Q. What does the Mayor’s Order regarding short-term rental activity during the inauguration actually do?


A. In the District of Columbia, the renting of residential property generally requires a Certificate of Occupancy and a Basic Business License with the relevant housing endorsements.  The Mayor has suspended enforcement of these requirements during the inaugural period to alleviate the expected shortage of hotel and other accommodations.  The District will not enforce these requirements with respect to rental agreements that begin after January 12, 2009 and end before January 28, 2009, and in which the property was already being used for residential purposes on November 18, 2008.


Q. Does this mean that the District is giving a free pass for this 2 week period to all landlords who may not be in compliance with licensing and C of O requirements?

A. No.  This relaxation in enforcement applies only to rental agreements that both begin and end within the 2 week inaugural period.


Q. Does this mean for the inaugural weekend I may sublet the apartment or the house that I am renting?


A. The answer to this question is to be found in your lease, not in the Mayor’s Order.  You may sublet your apartment if your lease so permits or is silent on the issue.  Generally, however, rental leases prohibit subletting.  Subletting in violation of a lease prohibition -- as does the violation of any material lease term -- gives your landlord grounds to evict you.  You may also be liable to your landlord for damage caused by the sub-lessee and for violating your lease.


Q.  Do I have rights under a verbal agreement to lease residential living space?

A. Yes, while the terms of the agreement may be more difficult to prove in court, verbal agreements regarding residential rentals are legally binding in the District of Columbia.


Q. What do I do if the condition of the house or apartment I rented for the inauguration is unsafe or uninhabitable? 

A. Ask the lessor to immediately resolve the problem, or, if the lessor is unavailable or unable to do so, call the District government’s response services at 311, or for emergencies call 911.   


Q. How can I best assure that the lessor will return my security deposit in full?

A. We strongly recommend that upon arriving at the apartment or house you are renting, you “walk through” the entire premises with the lessor and make a written note of any pre-existing property damage and appliance malfunctions.  Give the lessor a copy of the note and keep one for yourself.  If the lessor is not available to do so, then conduct a walk-through on your own, make a written note of any property damage and appliance malfunctions, provide a dated and signed copy to the lessor, and keep a copy for yourself.  If possible, also “walk through” the entire premises with the lessor just prior to departing.


Q.   What do I do if the house or apartment I rented for the inauguration does not comport with the terms of my agreement with the lessor?

A. This is a consumer protection issue.  If the lessor is a company regularly in the rental business, call the Consumer Hotline at 442-4615, operated by the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, Consumer Protection Office.  Or fill out the Consumer Complaint Form found at wwww.dcra.dc.gov under the “Services, Consumer Protection” tab.  That Office will respond to your inquiry once it reopens on Wednesday, January 21, 2009.  If the lessor is not regularly in the rental business, you may only have a judicial remedy.  Note that in the case of a sub-lease, a sub-lessee generally only has rights against the sub-lessor.



Q. What number should the public call during the Inauguration to contact the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA)?


A. 311




Q.  I’m planning on driving to the Inauguration.  Will I be able to drive into the District and find parking?


A.  Driving into the District on Inauguration Day will be very difficult.  Most of the inbound bridges will be closed to normal traffic and motorists can expect heavy congestion on the city’s major thoroughfares.  In addition, many parking spaces close to the National Mall will not be available or will be reserved for authorized vehicles.  Therefore, we suggest that you plan to park in outlying locations and use Metro to access the event.  A list of parking locations is available on www.inauguration.dc.gov.


Q.  I live inside the designated security perimeter for the Inauguration.  Will I be able to park on my street?



A.  Yes, but once the Secret Service restricts access to the security areas on the morning of January 20, no unauthorized vehicles will be allowed in or out until the security restrictions are lifted.


Q.  I live in one of the areas designated for bus parking.  Will there be any street parking available in my neighborhood?



A.  The District does not plan to park any charter buses in front of single family residences.  However, there will be no parking allowed on non-residential streets and as a result it could be difficult to find open parking spaces.


Q.  I live in one of the bus parking areas and I have a reserved parking space in my building.  Will I be able to drive in and out of my garage on January 20?



A.  If you have identification or other evidence to confirm your address, you will be allowed in and out of the bus parking areas but not if you reside in the hard perimeter.



Q.  I work in one of the areas designated for bus parking.  Will I be able to drive to my building?


A.  No.  Only authorized vehicles and buses will be allowed in the areas cordoned off for bus parking.  In any case, driving into the city will be difficult and parking will be extremely limited.  If you are working on January 20, please consider telecommuting if possible, or consider taking public transit or carpooling if you must travel into the District.



Q.  Will residential zone parking restrictions be enforced on Inauguration Day?


A.  January 20 is a District Government holiday and as a result there will be no rush hour or residential zone enforcement.  However, motorists are reminded not to park in front of bus stops, fire hydrants and spaced designated with “No Parking Anytime” signs.  In addition, there will be widespread parking restrictions and road closures in the vicinity of the Inaugural events and you should be on the lookout for temporary “No Parking” signs.




Q.  I work inside the designated security perimeter for the Inauguration and I usually park in the garage in my building.  Will I be able to drive in to work on January 20?


A.  No.  The Secret Service will restrict access to the security areas at approximately 4 a.m. on January 20 and no unauthorized vehicles will be allowed in or out until the security restrictions are lifted.



Q.  I work inside one of the areas designated for bus parking.  Will I be able to drive to my building?


A.  No. Only authorized vehicles and buses will be allowed in the areas cordoned off for bus parking. In any case, driving into the city will be difficult and parking will be extremely limited.



Q.  I live in Virginia and work in the District.  Will I be able to drive to work across the Potomac River?


A.  No. All of the bridges connecting the District and Northern Virginia will be closed to personal vehicles. (http://inauguration.dc.gov/parking_areas.asp).



Q.  If I can’t drive, how should I get to work?


A.  There are a number of alternate ways to get to work on January 20, including public transportation.  Metro will be running rush hour rail service beginning at 4 am and enhanced bus service throughout the Washington area (www.wmata.com).  Ridership is expected to be very high so allow extra time for your commute.

You can also walk or bicycle across any of the Potomac and Anacostia River bridges, or use any number of transportation options being offered in Maryland (www.maryland.gov) and Virginia (www.virginia.gov).

Also, if possible, please consider telecommuting or taking leave that day.



Q.  Will my company be able to make deliveries to businesses in downtown DC on January 20?


A.  The volume of vehicle and pedestrian traffic, coupled with the road closures, will make it virtually impossible for trucking companies to engage in their normal operations on Inauguration Day. Therefore, the District Department of Transportation is encouraging all trucking companies to avoid the District of Columbia on Tuesday, January 20, 2009.  The downtown area will be closed and inaccessible to all traffic.

To prepare for the 2009 Presidential Inauguration, please consider the following:

  • Traffic around the Washington, DC metropolitan area is projected to be heaviest from noon Monday, January 19, until mid-morning Wednesday, January 21.
  • Major interstates and arterial roads to the city are expected to experience extraordinarily heavy traffic during this timeframe.
  • Deliveries should be made and vehicles should depart the District prior to midnight on Sunday, January 18.
  • Many local businesses are being encouraged to increase their stock levels for the week so please plan accordingly.
  • Be aware of heavy pedestrian traffic when operating within the District of Columbia; yield to pedestrians and obey all traffic signals.
  • Road and bridge closures will begin at 12:01 am on January 20 (for more information on road closures, visit www.gettingthere.dc.gov.)
  • Please contact your customers to discuss alternative delivery/pickup options for Tuesday, January 20, 2009.


Q.  Are you confident that streets will be reopened by morning rush hour on Wednesday, January 21?


A.  Yes.



Q.  If I live in Southeast and work in Northwest, how will I get to work, since I can’t cross the hard perimeter?


A.  You can’t drive through the hard perimeter, but you can walk. You can also use Metrorail to get across town.



Q.  What is the southern boundary of the hard perimeter?


A.  A map of the perimeter boundaries is available online at www.secretservice.gov.



Q.  Can employees enter the hard perimeter on the 19th?


A.  Yes, however please note that crews will begin setting up barricades at approximately 1 pm on Monday, January 19 in preparation for the Inauguration.  As a result, travel in the downtown area will become more difficult that afternoon and evening.



Q.  Are there parking or other restrictions on 16th Street and Georgia Avenue?


A.  A complete list of road closings and parking restrictions is posted online at www.gettingthere.dc.gov.



Q.  How will essential building staff access the secure perimeter, the soft perimeter, and the yellow bus parking zone?


A.  All pedestrians will be able to enter the zones where vehicular traffic is restricted.


Events Calendar

Events Calendar
Information on Balls, Galas, the Inaugural Parade, and the Swearing In Ceremony.

Getting There

Getting There
Walk, metro or bus to the parade-normal roadway access to pickup and drop off passengers in and around the National Mall and in the surrounding area will be unavailable.

Discover DC

Discover DC
Use the District's data catalog to create your own applications and dashboards and share them with the world.

Official Inaugural Websites

Official Inaugural Websites
Helpful links to official inaugural websites...

Fun Facts

Fun Facts
Did you know this about the inauguration...

Public Safety

Public Safety
Sign up for Emergency Text Alerts, learn more about protective actions and the hypothermia hotline.

Barack Obama Bio

Barack Obama Bio
Barack Obama was raised by a single mother and his grandparents. They didn't have much money, but they taught him values from the Kansas heartland where they grew up.

Joe Biden Bio

Joe Biden Bio
Joe Biden is a rare mix. A leader who has worked for decades in Washington, but has never lived there. An expert on foreign policy, whose heart and values are firmly rooted...

Photo Gallery

Photo Gallery
See images of past inaugurations...