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Update 5:40 p.m.: The District government will open Tuesday at regular time, Mayor Muriel Bowser said at a press event on Monday afternoon, but D.C. Public Schools will remain closed until Wednesday. Trash pickup will not resume until Thursday.
The mayor also added that the District is “finalizing the paperwork” that will allow it to apply for disaster assistance from the federal government. She said the White House had called her this afternoon to offer support from President Barack Obama that the process would go “smoothly.”
“I’m happy to say that today we reached 100 percent passability on all of our major [arterial roads],” said HSEMA Director Chris Geldart. D.C. will now focus on areas that haven’t been covered by cleanup equipment as much as the main streets have, he said.
As of 5:40 p.m., the Office of Personnel Management had not announced whether the federal government will be open Tuesday.
Update, 2:45 p.m.: Metro will resume above-ground service on the Blue and Yellow lines at 3 p.m., per a press release. This includes service to Reagan National Airport:
Blue Line trains will operate between Largo Town Center and Huntington, and Yellow Line trains will operate between Mt. Vernon Square and Huntington. Braddock Road Station remains closed at this time.
Almost 36 hours after snow stopped accumulating, D.C. officials said they’re hoping to restore some sense of normalcy by Tuesday.
“We are working very hard to get the D.C. government open tomorrow,” Mayor Muriel Bowser said at a press conference this morning. She added that the District will likely have a decision about agency and school openings Monday evening.
“We will endeavor to open our schools as quickly as possible,” D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson said.
Major roads are starting to become passable but many secondary and residential roads remain compromised. Bowser explained that D.C. still remains under a snow emergency, and again urged residents to stay off roadways in order to make room for heavy equipment. She also said that D.C. does not expect to collect trash until Thursday; previously, only Monday and Tuesday service suspensions had been announced. (“Do not put your residential trash in a city can,” Bowser emphasized. “It is against the law.”)
As of 11 a.m., all Metrorail stations within the District—except for Benning Road—have reopened, officials said. Bus service will operate today on a “lifeline” basis along 22 routes, from noon to 5 p.m. The B30 (Greenbelt-BWI) and 5A routes (L’Enfant Plaza-Dulles), which service area airports, will also operate. Metrorail expects to close tonight and open tomorrow at its regular times.
— @wmata (@wmata) January 25, 2016
Asked whether certain areas of the District are being prioritized for plowing, D.C.’s HSEMA Director Chris Geldart responded:
“Our priority is to clean the entire city of course. We’re going through that in a very methodical and thought-out matter. We want to concentrate our resources in certain areas—in the areas that we’ve laid out, which are across the entire District. Spreading the resources all over and just barely scraping along throughout the whole city—not a good way to do it [for] this storm.”
The director added that D.C. is requesting federal resources to recoup the cost of the clean-up, along with other jurisdictions. In some areas, the District officially saw up to 23 inches of snow, he said.
Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier said the average number of calls to police decreased around 60 percent during the storm; combined with a high number of officers on duty working long shifts, response times were “almost” normal.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery