News & Politics

That Water in the Dupont Circle Fountain? Just a Test.

The Park Service is testing repairs to the feature and hopes to have it back on this spring.

Photograph by Medioimages/Photodisc via iStock/Getty Images Plus.

Hearts raced and keyboards clattered Tuesday after a sharp-eyed passer-by noticed that the fountain in Dupont Circle was once again active:

Alas, we’ll have to wait a bit longer for the full show, says National Park System spokesperson Mike Litterst. Tuesday’s aquatechnics represented a test of repairs to the fountain, whose once-pronounced tilt impaired its ability to dispense water with the majesty one might expect of a water feature named for Rear Admiral Samuel F. Dupont.

(Also, in 2018, someone dyed the water red. Rude!)

NPS “recently finished waterproofing the base of the fountain and are currently pressure testing the pipes and working on the mechanical components in the new vault,” Litterst tells Washingtonian in an email. The fountain, he says, should be gushing again by the middle of spring, “with water once again falling from all three spouts (not just the one we’ve all gotten used to) and at an increased flow not seen in many years.”

Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. He lives in Del Ray.