December 12th, 2008
09:43 AM ET
14 years ago

Officials plan for massive inaugural turnout

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Federal officials are bracing for a massive turnout for Barack Obama's presidential inauguration."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Federal and local officials are bracing for an expected massive turnout for the January inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama, but say predictions of 4 or 5 million visitors to Washington are too high.

However, authorities from several law enforcement and transportation agencies declined to offer an alternative estimate for the January 20 swearing-in and parade.

"We continue to check on expected planes and buses and hotel rooms, and I can say there's just nothing to suggest 4 million. But if it happens we'll be prepared to deal with that," said Malcolm Wiley, a spokesman for the U.S. Secret Service.

Watch: a Web site designed for the ticketless

For crowd control, the Metropolitan Washington Police Department has arranged for 4,000 police from departments outside Washington to match the 4,000 Washington police officers assigned exclusively to the inauguration.

Planners are looking for parking for an expected 10,000 tour buses from outside the Washington area. That's about 10 times the number of tour buses that flood the nation's capital annually for the Cherry Blossom Festival. So far, officials have found about 75 percent of needed bus parking, but space is becoming precious. Shuttle arrangements to sports stadium locations in Maryland are under consideration.

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Filed under: Inauguration
soundoff (70 Responses)
  1. libbssuck1

    Sure, bail out the auto union crimminals.

    December 12, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  2. BM

    Millions in security? How about the millions all the crooks have stolen of the taxpayers money?

    December 12, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  3. History

    Everything about this man is historic, almost god-like. So, money is no object. Just hope the terrorists will not come close to home, as before 9/11, 2001.

    December 12, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  4. Tim

    I already feel my gag reflex acting up.

    December 12, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  5. Tim

    Hope is for the gullible. Just ask a snake oil salesman or anyone who contributes to a televangilist.

    December 12, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  6. Debby

    Yep the country almost in a depression and the Obama's puttin on the ritz with taxpayers money.

    December 12, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  7. Ana

    Just another reason why I should stay home and watch it from my TV.

    That place is going to be a mad house......and with the bar opens until 5's like putting fire on a flame.

    December 12, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  8. JabariO

    Change has come!

    December 12, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  9. Brian from Fort Mill, SC

    Bea December 12th, 2008 1:19 pm ET

    I wonder how many millions the extra security is going to cost us taxpayers at a time when the country is in financial crisis.
    Don't worry. If you lose your job, you won't pay any taxes! 🙂

    December 12, 2008 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  10. Wow?

    i'm driving.....!

    December 12, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  11. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Nothing happening here in the DC Metro area next month, folks. Just sit back, watch the party on TV and wait for the keepsake DVDs. Besides, most of you can't handle life in the city and you know it. Save yourself some grief and stay home. Please?

    December 12, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  12. Brenda R. Harris

    Well, the president is entitled to his inauguration too. It's really is mine bloggeling to me how some things are good for others and some have to give up things just to please small mined people. Hate is strong and it can distroy a persons mine. There are so many haters in the world so I would suggest to Mr. Obama pray for all the haters when you say your prayers at night.

    December 12, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  13. Nicki

    I wish I could be there. It is something special to witness this historic event. I'm so proud America made this choice!

    December 12, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  14. yellow dog democrat

    Hope Wins – the rest of you who don't agree – can stay home or turn off your TV – give it a rest – Proud that we have a new President-Elect with great ideas and a great team coming on board! This new POTUS has a very high approval rating already – even from those who did not vote for him – & even John McCain has voiced his approval!

    Support is what is needed to get the U.S. through the difficulties ahead – and the families that are affected by the economic down-turn- who knows who will be next – it just may be the guys shouting their disapproval.

    December 12, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  15. Fran

    To the haters that always want to find fault with anything concerning President – elect Obama, what do you expect to be done to protect this man and his family from crazy people who would try to do them harm? He is our next President and like it or not whatever the cost they must be protected from harm.

    December 12, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  16. chuck


    December 12, 2008 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  17. thoms

    The inauguration will have a dark shadow due to Obama's shaddy dealings and all of his crooked and corrupt friends.

    December 12, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  18. Ms Cleo

    January 20th, 2009 will be a nice sunny day. Who god bless, no man curse!!

    December 12, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  19. renee


    December 12, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  20. Soccer Nana

    Bea, the country can't be in such a "financial crisis" if gun sales went up 47% simply because our current PEOTUS won the election.

    I pay my taxes as well as the next working American; as a matter of fact, I just paid $887 worth from my paycheck today. If the PEOTUS and the sitting President need extra protection, then so beit.

    December 12, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
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