WASHINGTON -- While it's certainly not unusual for D.C. area drivers to complain about traffic delays and congestion, there's one day of the year that can create a moment of dread for some commuters: the annual National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony.
Typically, major commuter roadways adjacent to the Ellipse are closed to traffic during the middle of the evening rush hour, causing a ripple effect of gridlock around the White House and downtown.
15th Street will be closed between Constitution Avenue and E Street/Pennsylvania Avenue. 17th Street will be closed between Constitution Avenue and New York Avenue. Both routes are used by thousands of Virginia-bound commuters trying to reach the 14th Street, Arlington Memorial and Theodore Roosevelt bridges during the evening rush hour.