While there are very few good things to come out of the Covid19 Pandemic, maybe rethinking the role the Colonial Parkway plays for locals and tourists will be one of them. The National Park Service (NPS) at Colonial National Historical Park is seeking public comments regarding a proposal to implement recurring, temporary closures of a 7-mile portion of the Parkway to motor vehicles.
If implemented, the closures would take place between Route 199 Kingspoint in Williamsburg and Route 359 near the entrance to Jamestown Island. The purpose of the proposed temporary, recurring closures would be to offer recreational opportunities to experience the Parkway free from motor vehicle traffic. If enacted, the proposed closure would give bicyclists and pedestrians a scenic route from Colonial Williamsburg directly to Jamestown Island.
Currently the NPS uses a special Use Permit issued to BikeWalk Williamsburg for the Pedal the Parkway event from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. on the first Saturday in May. Pedal the Parkway allows bicyclists, runners, and walkers to recreate on a portion of the Colonial Parkway without sharing the roadway with motor vehicles.
Proposed examples could include:
>One Saturday or Sunday a month through the spring to the fall
>One entire weekend a month through the spring to the fall
>One weekday a month to prevent impact to weekend visitors, but also facilitate use by local visitors for bicycles and pedestrians
>Entire day or half day closures