We all might want to think about getting out of the city for the rest of September. Pope Francis’s visit next weekend will overlap with the United Nations’ annual traffic clusterfuck 70th General Assembly, and since both events require massive amounts of street closure, this means that pretty much all of Manhattan is going to descend into a snarl of angry drivers and horn-honking sociopaths. But, like, more so than usual.
The New York City Department of Transportation this week fired off a missive warning us all that, basically, all of Manhattan is going to be closed, at some point.
And that’s just a partial list. The full list of closures, effective from September 26 to 28, is comically long — it runs to four pages — and the city warns of traffic delays in Central Park West, East Harlem, the financial district, midtown, Madison Square Garden, and the Upper East Side. If you’re keeping track at home, that’s pretty much everywhere on this little island, with the exception of maybe a few side streets in Inwood. Maybe.
Drivers, needless to say, should set their cars on fire now. And if you happen to live or work in any of these areas, the DOT reminds you to be prepared to show your papers and prove it, for unspecified reasons. “Building occupants and employees in all affected areas are encouraged to carry identification at all times,” the agency says.
Also, the pope will be holding a much anticipated Mass at Madison Square Garden at 6 p.m. on Friday, September 25. So have fun with that evening commute, New Jersey.
The full “street closure and traffic restrictions” list is posted below.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 16, 2015