features a large image declaring "we're open" on its front page Despite this claim, when my Capitol City Project colleague Joe Schoffstall and I inspected the parking lots we noticed that a large section of one of the parking lots directly in front of Mount Vernon was still barricaded off. When I asked Ms. Wood about the section of parking lot she responded that it was "most likely owned by the Park Service". When I asked for clarification on how it could be possible that the Park Service owns a section of one of the Mount Vernon parking lots she declined to elaborate. There is no word on when the section of Mount Vernon parking that remains barricaded will be reopened. Mount Vernon officials see the issue as closed despite the section of parking remaining blocked. Ms. Wood was able to refute a claim made in a highly trafficked piece on the conspiracy site infowars which asserted that the National Park Service attempted to "blockad[e] the entrance". According to her email "No one tried to block the visitor entrance". Newt Gingrich had asserted on Twitter That includes a parking lot with a mere 3 spots located on the parkway between Mount Vernon and Old Town Alexandria. At the moment there is no word on when the government shutdown will end, when the National Park Service will remove their barricades, or why the barricades were really necessary in the first place. Hopefully those answers will all become apparent soon. UPDATE 10/4/13: The large section of parking lot I reported on earlier remains blocked off as of Friday morning. I have still not received comment from the Department of Interior or National Park Service spokesperson Michael Litterst.
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