National Zoo proposes security checkpoints, reduced access

July 6, 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Smithsonian Institution wants to ramp up security at the National Zoo, which is currently its only public venue without screenings in place.

News outlets report that the National Capital Planning Commission on July 12 will review the proposed development plan, which includes additional perimeter fencing to close gaps and reducing the number of pedestrian entrances from 13 to three. A fourth entrance would be added at a parking garage that has yet to be constructed.

Citing more than 25,000 daily visitors during peak season, the Smithsonian said in a statement that it wants to implement “access controls,” with bag checks and other forms of visitor screening at permanent security pavilions. The National Zoo says it has experienced several security-related incidents, leading to temporary checkpoints this spring.

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