Tree Lighting, Obama Visit Force Day Of Gridlock For NYC Drivers

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Between Wednesday night’s Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at Rockefeller Center and a visit by President Obama, commuters were better off sticking to mass transit.

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Due to the tree lighting ceremony — which took place shortly  before 9 p.m. — Fifth and Sixth Avenues between 48th and 52st Streets were closed until around 11 p.m.

A Memorable Night At Rockefeller Center. 1010 WINS’ Al Jones Reports

With hundreds of cops and barricades set up along 5th, 6th and 7th avenues, it was not a fun day to be a delivery driver in the Rockefeller Center area.

“It takes about an hour or so to go around the block so and that’s only because they just started blocking off traffic,” driver Michael Santos told 1010 WINS’ Terry Sheridan.

1010 WINS’ Terry Sheridan Reports

President Obama also hosted a fundraising dinner at Gotham Bar and Grill  Wednesday, also causing road closures and frozen zones.

Some even contend the conditions on Wednesday were worse than United Nations week.

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond At Rockefeller Center

“And with the President and that — that’s like a double whammy,” Santos said.

Even many streets that remained open were squeezed down to one lane.

Is gridlock a small price to pay for living and working in New York City? Sound off in our comments section below…

  • Beazer

    Hey, Michael H…of course I care about the laws of the USA… I just don’t care about the Bamster

  • The Realist

    Why is it still ILLEGAL to use a New York State tree at Rockefeller Center? Why must we keep subsidizing everywhere else?

    • Michael H.

      What the hell are you smoking? Last year’s tree was from Mahopac, NY. The ’04 tree was from Suffern. The tree in ’86 was from Nanuet.

      I think you need either your facts or your head checked.

  • spacesurfer

    Tree “lightning?” Surely you mean tree “lightening,” where all the carolers bring a bottle of Clorox and scrub each leaf…

    • Clark A

      Now you’re going to take some Clorox and scrub leaves? Are you for real?

  • UUUnicorn

    “Tree Lightning”?!

    Watch out for electrocuting bolts!

  • None Of Your Business

    Hmmm. I’m still trying to figure out how the corrupt FBI and DEA are impacting on today’s gridlock in New York City. Possibly, it’s a Communist plot.

  • Lawn-Guy Land

    Suggesting that people use “mass transit” is irrelevant. Public transportation has no place in a great country like ours because REAL Americans drive everywhere. People who ride subways are worthless traitors.

    • Clark

      Will you get a frigging life already?

  • jeff

    We are all paying for the upkeep of the White House. Why doesn’t the president stay there and have his rich cronies come to him to donate money? It seems the President is never at the White House–only his mother-in-law! Why does he have to burden hard working New Yorkers who want to get home for their own dinner with gridlock conditions just so that he can get money? Who is footing the bill for his airfare on a personal visit to New York City? Enough, already.

    • Michael H.

      I’ll wager that his campaign is paying for this trip, as it is a fundraising trip and not one on official business.

      • steve

        Then there shold be no over the top security. If he is not on “official” business. The security outside and barricades is already causing issues.

        • Michael H.

          He’s the President of the United States. The security is required even if he is stopping at a Burger King drive through. He is entitled, by law, to that security for the term of his presidency plus ten years afterwards.

          Or do you not care about the laws of our country?

    • How

      Perhaps he didnt hear about AA filing Chapter 11. How about flying coach and campaigning on the plane where he can pass a hat around for doantions. What is the differnce in the cost to the taxpayers between flying everywhere on Air Force One vs a coach ticket on AA. That would solve the budget problem

    • The Realist

      Nobody objected when prior Presidents (including your uber-hero George Bush) spent time away from the White House. Why is Obama not permitted to travel when other Presidents were?

      • Michael H.

        Plenty of people complained about Bush’s time away from the White House. Of course that is because he spent more days on his ranch “clearing brush” than he did actually doing the work the people hired him to do.

  • Ellen

    Would rathe be stuck in grid lock where all the excitement is rather then here in a small town north of Boston. New York your the greatest, and my heat is with you on this special day.

  • steve

    President Scrooge. Man could care less about Christmas.

    • Michael H.

      Christmas is not for another 3.5 weeks. It’s not even December yet.

      • steve

        Tree lighting is today. But President Scrooge could care less. Needs the campaign money from those Greedy corporations he loathes so much.

        • Michael H.

          I guarantee you, Obama loves those greedy corporations. Had you been paying attention you’d see that OWS even protested outside the Sheraton where Obama was holding a fundraiser.

  • j

    Corrupt FBI and DEA use no-knock warrants to enter suspect’s homes while they are away and steal items.

    They mostly steal watches, jewelry and less frequently expensive prescription drugs by returning a second time and swapping them with fakes.

    Some of them where stealing wear item parts off of cars, swapping them with old worn out parts from their personal autos and in some cases leaving the auto in a dangerous state.

  • Esmerelda

    Living in NYC is not a favor someone is doing for us.
    It is just accepted that in a very popular city things will be happening
    and people will have to accept it.

    • Howard Sprague

      Very true Esmerelda . Dignitaries visit NYC frequently and it does affect traffic flow intermittently, the tree lighting happens annually and also results in traffic issues. It’s all part of living in a major metropolitan area. If you don’t want to deal with it, move elsewhere.

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