Monday, January 5, 2009

Preparations for the inauguration of President Obama

The six photos posted here provide an update on the state of preparations for the inauguration of President-Elect Obama.
  1. VIP parade viewing stand in front of White House;
  2. Another viewing stand across the street from the White House;
  3. Jogger passes reviewing stands adjacent to the Treasury Building;
  4. A Pennsylvania Avenue viewing stand;
  5. An apartment rental advertisement posted on the Mall (Paul's offer is 4 days for $2,100);
  6. The US capital, where the swearing-in ceremony takes place. (Those not lucky enough to get seats at the capital will apparently be able to view the ceremonies on large screen television monitors).
  7. The final photo shows two cameramen awaiting the arrival of Obama from Chicago. Obama would arrive three hours after I took the photo to stay at a hotel across the street from the White House. To protect the hotel's new guest, a vast 3-square-block area adjacent to the White House has been closed to traffic and barriers have been set up.
Talking to the capital police today, here are some things I learned:
  • Three million people are expected to visit Washington DC for the event.
  • There will apparently be no motor vehicle traffic in downtown DC.
  • The metro system will begin operations at 4:00 AM (but may quickly become overcrowded and virtually unusable).
  • If you want to see the parade, better get out there on the street by about 6:00 AM. But if you arrive earlier than this, you might be turned away. Since everywhere will be over-crowded, the policeman suggested watching the event on screens set up near the Lincoln Memorial.
  • Pray it's not a really cold day.
  • Obama will be running around town from one party to another into the evening.

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