Dear Parks Friends,
As many of you may know, the State of Maryland is looking to place a light rail system, connecting Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties – this project is referred to as the “Purple Line.”
If the Purple Line is approved, the final two miles of the traditional Parks Half Marathon (PHM) course (Georgetown Branch Trail) will no longer be available, including the finish area at Elm Street Park. While the project is still pending approval, the permitting process for the race is extensive and time-sensitive. We cannot wait for the Purple Line’s possible approval and risk being left without a course, and subsequently – without a race. If the Purple Line is approved, the trail will close immediately.
Therefore, we began working on a new course contingency earlier this year. I have been in close contact with the Purple Line staff, local DOT personnel and law enforcement agencies over the past several months and feel at this point, the necessary course of action is to implement the course changes for the 2017 event.
A link to the *new* 2017 course has been posted on our website.
Some highlights include:
- The start & finish remain easily accessible to Metro.
- Time spent running in beautiful Rock Creek Park has been increased.
- The race will start on Redland Road, near the railroad overpass, enter Needwood Park at Mile 2.1 and run the remainder of the race in the park.
- The final .75 mile will be run directly on Beach Drive (closed to traffic) and finish near Grosvenor Lane.
- The fantastic finish festival will take place on Beach Drive, north of Grosvenor Lane.
Please read the website carefully, as all of the tabs have been or will be updated with new information for participants, neighborhoods and spectators. Registration goes up on June 1st, so REGISTER TODAY!
Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your participation – we are looking forward to an exciting event this year!
Race Director – Parks Half Marathon