The Washington Post
Keep Beach Drive closed
Regarding the July 12 Metro article “National Park Service weighs making summers car-free on Beach Drive”:
In 1867, Sen. B. Gratz Brown of Missouri proposed the valley around Rock Creek become a federal park. His justification, for anyone who has walked, run, biked or bladed along Beach Drive over the past two years, was unsurprising: “The life and animation of gay concourse, the uprisen majesty of the forest, the intoxicating gladness of spring flowers, the laugh of the heavens through playing branches, the shimmer of the waters, the song of birds, graceful forms.”
I am astonished that the National Park Service is considering reopening Beach Drive to cars. The proposal is antithetical to the mission of the National Park Service, the interests of the residents of D.C., the fight against climate change and the point of a park. Parks are spaces for people to recreate. Cities should have havens where people — not cars — can enjoy themselves in nature.
I run on the closed section of Beach Drive several times per week. In July, I’ve seen 12 deer, two owls, an eagle and a beaver — and not a single car. This world, country and city have enough space for cars. We need more space for people, animals and nature. NPS, that’s your job. Do it, please.
Jacob Jordan, Washington