On parade //
Dr. Oshan Gadsden gives his daughter, Zuri, a heightened view of the festivities during Sunday’s Easter on Parade on Monument Avenue. The vantage point also allowed her brightly colored costume to be seen by crowds at the annual holiday event. Please see more photos, B3.
Cityscape // This notice in the 1700 block of Colorado Avenue in the West End signals that construction may soon be finished on GRTC’s new bus rapid-transit system called “Pulse.”
GRTC promised to overhaul regular bus routes and bus stops when Pulse starts operations, and the new signs posted around the area indicate GRTC is preparing for the end of construction and the start of service changes.
The completion of Pulse would be good news for businesses that have lost customers along the Pulse route because of the construction work and commuters weary of the traffic disruption the $64 million project has created, particularly along Broad Street.
In a statement to the Free Press on Monday, GRTC spokeswoman Carrie Rose Pace stated that “construction activities continue for the GRTC Pulse project,” noting that June 30 remains the fixed completion date under the contract with Lane Construction Co.
“The project team continues to push to get the work completed as early as possible and will announce a service launch date” when that is known, she stated, adding that Pulse service is projected to begin this summer following testing and approval.
Next week, Pulse stations at 10 locations are scheduled to get finishing touches, including installation of cedar ceilings inside stations and pedestrian curb cuts to make it easier for people in wheelchairs to reach the stations.
No additional work is scheduled on stations at four locations for the week beginning Sunday, April 8, according to GRTC. Those stations are located on Broad Street at Willow Lawn Drive, Staples Mill Road, Cleveland Street and the Science Museum of Virginia.
Campaign kickoff //
U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine speaks to enthusiastic supporters Monday evening at the Maggie Walker Governor’s School as he launches his campaign for a second, six-year term in Washington. The Richmond rally was the first of 22 stops the incumbent Democrat scheduled in his bid for a November election victory. Sen. Kaine, 60, is a former Virginia governor and Richmond mayor who was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2012. Three archconservative Republican supporters of President Trump will face-off in a June 12 GOP primary for the opportunity to challenge Sen. Kaine in November. They are Corey Stewart, chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors; Delegate Nick Freitas of Culpeper; and E.W. Jackson of Chesapeake, a minister and attorney who failed in his 2013 bid for lieutenant governor.
Signs of spring in the West End
Holiday flair in the city // Easter weekend in Richmond was filled with sunshine and fun. People of all ages flocked to two staple favorite events celebrating the holiday — the Dominion Family Easter at Maymont last Saturday and Sunday’s Easter on Parade on Monument Avenue.
Children enjoyed decorating eggs and bonnets, competing in games and visiting with the Easter Bunny at the event on the rolling grounds of Maymont.
Thousands enjoyed seeing and being seen as they strolled along Monument Avenue wearing their Easter finery, bonnets and costumes. The street was closed to traffic between Davis and Allen avenues, turning the tree-lined boulevard into a venue for music and entertainment for people and pets alike. Christopher Hudert walks on stilts high above the crowds strolling along Monument Avenue, and Darryl Burrell’s outfit, right, is topped by a handmade crown of fresh flowers.
Holiday flair in the city // Audrey Ross, 4, pauses with her mother,
Audrey Ross, 4, pauses with her mother, Tarah Westont, to watch one of the performances at Easter on Parade.
A couple of well-dressed pooches, left, take a break in their Easter bonnets and matching sunglasses and bunny ears. The annual event also features a pet bonnet showcase.
The Ephesus Pathfinder Drumline, above, strikes up a beat that gets spectators grooving as the group parades and plays down the avenue.