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D.C. residents could soon meet regularly with Park Service officials: congressional delegate

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton says the National Park Service will hold quarterly public meetings with locals

The U.S. Capitol as seen from the National Mall
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Denizens of the District will soon be able to voice their opinions directly to officials with the National Park Service (NPS) about federally controlled green spaces in the city, according to Eleanor Holmes Norton, D.C.’s longtime delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives. In a release Thursday, Norton’s office said NPS had committed to host quarterly public meetings.

“The National Park Service is necessarily one of my priorities because nearly every park in the District of Columbia is owned by NPS and funded by the federal government,” Norton said in a statement. “NPS has important local responsibilities, making open communication and transparency essential for residents. I am grateful NPS has taken the important step of agreeing to hear from the community quarterly to prioritize their needs.” Details about when, where, and how such meetings would be held were not immediately given by Norton’s office.

Curbed has contacted NPS for comment on the delegate’s announcement and will update this post should the Park Service provide any. Local residents have long complained about NPS’s management of neighborhood parks, including triangle and circle parks situated on federal land. But improvements may be on the way: Earlier this year, the U.S. government approved legislation that in part allows the District to enter cooperative management agreements with NPS for the upkeep of federal parks in the city—including downtown’s Franklin Square Park.