NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The future president residing in midtown Manhattan is bringing a unique challenge to that neighborhood.
As CBS2’s Alice Gainer reported, traffic surrounding Trump Tower has been a mess. Barricades, dozens of police officers, bomb-sniffing dogs and huge trucks are guarding Donald Trump’s high-rise home as security is being stepped up to protect the president-elect and his family.
Huge orange and white Sanitation Department dump trucks loaded with dirt lined the eastern lane of Fifth Avenue outside Trump Tower for part of the day.
The west side was jammed with cameras and reporters behind barricades as the police beg tourists snapping selfies to keep it moving.
The Disorder Control Unit, which is specially trained to deal with large protests, is also standing by and the NYPD is monitoring social media for any pop-up demonstrations that may occur, CBS2’s Magdalena Doris reported.
The NYPD set up a security booth around the corner on 55th Street. Police have also closed 56th Street to car traffic between Fifth and Sixth avenues.
Police will be working with the Secret Service over the next few days to come up with a long term plan to guard what will be the president’s second home, WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman. It could involve permanent lane closures and truck restrictions.
“The NYPD, working with the Secret Service, have created, you know, a strong security plan,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
De Blasio addressed current and future security in the area.
“It’s a challenge. I don’t think it’s an overwhelming challenge,” Trump said. “Look, we’re talking about the next few months, and then Donald Trump’s going to be living in the White House.”
The security fortress is already impacting traffic. 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reported it took a bus 10 minutes to go one block while navigating through the area.
“It’s a good thing I don’t drive,” one woman said.
Some are concerned businesses in the area could take a hit as the holiday shopping season approaches.
“The vendors are really going to suffer, that’s the sad thing,” said one woman, who was trying to get past the barricades and into Prada.
Those who live and work in the area are just trying to cope with all the attention that follows Trump everywhere.
“I think this is a very temporary thing,” Dan, who works in the area, said.
“You have to just deal with it,” said Colin, who works on 56th Street. “This is New York, there’s always some modicum of inconvenience. You deal with it and move on.”
“I guess I just have to deal with it, it’s the way it is,” said Jessica, who had to find an alternate way to get into her 56th Street office.
“It’s reassuring we need it, I mean he’s right there, he’s right upstairs,” said Andrew Arnot, who works across the street.
On Wednesday night, an estimated 10,000 people marched from Union Square to Trump Tower, voicing their disappointment with the election results. Police said at least 65 protesters were arrested at Columbus Circle Wednesday night. There were no protesters Thursday afternoon, but there were large crowds.
Soon enough, holiday shoppers will add to the numbers.
“There will be some disruption,” de Blasio said. Look at the bright side — the holidays are coming anyway. Midtown is going to be all messed up anyway. I think people are going to manage.”
Meanwhile, the Federal Aviation Administration has imposed temporary flight restrictions for two miles around Trump Tower as a safety measure in response to his presidential victory.
A notice dated Wednesday bars aircraft from flying below 2,999 feet in midtown Manhattan, and in parts of Brooklyn and Queens. It says military aircraft supporting the Secret Service are exempt, along with police and emergency aircraft.
The FAA generally issues temporary restrictions when there’s a special event or hazardous condition.
The notice said the New York City air space restrictions are needed because of “VIP movement.”
The restriction will be in place through Inauguration Day and will expire Jan. 21.
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