Jefferson Memorial Handicap Parking
There are a few handicap spots on East Basin Drive. Drive by the Jefferson Memorial just beyond the food kiosk and you will see several spots. This is as close as motor vehicles can come to the Jefferson Memorial. For those with severe walking disabilities, this may prove to be a little far. Furthermore, there are frequently cars and buses illegally parked in these Jefferson Memorial handicap parking spots.
If you are riding together with an abled driver, there is a parking lot for the Jefferson Memorial which is somewhat further away. Use this lot in case all the handicap spots are full. You can be dropped off right by the food kiosk. The driver should then continue forward and bear to the left rather than go over a small stone bridge. This will take you underneath the 14th Street bridge. You will immediately encounter a series of parking areas by the Potomac River.
On-street parking on the National Mall is no longer free of charge. Three hour parking is available at $2 per hour. Parking meters only accept credit cards.
Handicap Access into the Jefferson Memorial
From the food kiosk, you should enter to the left side of the Jefferson Memorial. As you head up and around, there is a ramp that will take you through a doorway underneath the Memorial. There are bathrooms there and also an elevator to take you right up into the inner chamber, where you will find the Jefferson Statue and all the columns.
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Wheelchair Availability at the Jefferson Memorial
All of the major memorials have wheelchairs that the National Park Service will lend you to explore that memorial. All you need is an ID. Unfortunately, the Jefferson Memorial is the one memorial where it is difficult to access this service. There is no fully staffed information office. You must first find a National Park Service Ranger within the Jefferson Memorial and have him get you a wheelchair from a supply room. However, by the time you get there from the parking area, you have already come most of the distance. If you are with an abled person, that person could run up and get the wheelchair and take it back to the street to come and get you. The other memorials have a much easier system to obtain a National Park Service wheelchair. At the Jefferson Memorial, it is not a very convenient option.
Don’t Drive! — Take a Pedicab Tour including the Jefferson Memorial
Rather than deal with hassle of driving, why not let Nonpartisan Pedicab take you for a private tour of the monuments instead? In only 2-3 hours, you can see all of the major monuments and have time to stop and walk into all of them. We give you a narrated tour of the history of the monuments and buildings and how they relate to US history, as well as to the history of the city of Washington DC. If you find walking difficult, a pedicab is the easiest way to see all the monuments — and the most comfortable. Call Nonpartisan Pedicab at 7032319882. Or reserve online directly.
More information about Handicap Access on the National Mall
National Park Service Information on the Jefferson Memorial
Washington DC Disability Information — General Information for Handicapped visitors