Montgomery Parks

Last spring, the traffic changed on certain county parkways. Instead of cars and trucks, segments of these roads were traveled by runners, cyclists, kids on scooters and parents pushing jogging strollers. When gyms, playgrounds and basketball courts closed, many county residents turned to trails for fresh air and exercise. But that caused crowding. Paved paths, like the Capital Crescent Trail and Sligo Creek Trail, were clogged, making it tough for trail users to maintain social distancing. The solution: Shut down some roadways. In April, Montgomery Parks closed four sections of parkways to vehicles from Friday morning through Sunday evening, allowing people to use them for exercise and recreation, and giving them more space to spread out. The closures—Beach Drive from Connecticut Avenue to Knowles Avenue in Kensington; Little Falls Parkway from Massachusetts Avenue to Arlington Road in Bethesda; Sligo Creek Parkway from Forest Glen Road to University Boulevard West in Silver Spring and Wheaton; and Sligo Creek Parkway from Old Carroll Avenue to Piney Branch Road in Takoma Park—were so popular the county extended most of them until further notice (at press time, Little Falls Parkway was no longer closed to traffic on weekends).