WASHINGTON, D.C.: Cathedral opens first underground bus garage in nation's capital

May 11, 2007

Washington National Cathedral has announced a May 17 tour of its new underground bus and auto garage -- the first of its kind in D.C. -- that will benefit the local community through alleviating traffic congestion and improving pedestrian safety.

The 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. tour will allow participants to talk with Cathedral representatives, tourism officials and bus drivers on the garage’s effect on roadways, surrounding neighborhoods, tourism and worship services.

Construction for the $34 million underground bus and auto garage project began in the summer of 2005. The bus garage design is driver friendly and accommodates 18 buses.

Idling buses that once plagued Wisconsin Avenue while people visited the Cathedral could only enter and exit onto the busy thoroughfare. The improved conditions provided by the garage are a relief to many residents in surrounding neighborhoods.

Pedestrian safety is greatly enhanced because new crosswalks and a traffic light have been added to Wisconsin Avenue. A green roof, adorned with plants and trees, covers the facility.

Approximately 180,000 Cathedral visitors per year arrive by bus. Ninety percent of these visitors are young people visiting from around the country. Bus groups come for pre-arranged tours and to attend worship services.

In addition to bus parking, the facility features a bus driver lounge, gift shop, restrooms and security offices.

For additional information e-mail [email protected] or call 202-537-5513.

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