NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – President Donald Trump addressed the United Nations General Assembly Tuesday, and experts say the gridlock in New York City is likely to be even worse than years past.
Drivers face bumper-to-bumper traffic, bustling streets and barricades.
“The traffic is not moving at all. We take two, three, four minutes, five minutes before we cross one light,” said bus driver Fediga Mohammad.
Traffic expert Sam Schwartz, also known as “Gridlock Sam,” told CBS2 the road closures that allow dignitaries and delegations to move around Manhattan are only part of the problem.
“It’s Uber, it’s Lyft, it’s Via,” he said. “But it’s also we have more people than ever before. We have loads of micro deliveries – everybody’s getting the tiniest thing delivered in a big truck.”
The convenience of home deliveries from companies like Amazon and Fresh Direct means an inconvenience for those who share the roads. Big trucks have to double-park on top of lanes already closed for motorcades and emergency vehicles.
“One of the problems we have right now is the traffic speeds have plummeted prior to the United Nations. In Midtown, they’re 4.7 miles an hour, that’s walking speed,” Schwartz said. “Today and for the whole week, it will be 3 mph, 2 mph. When the president’s moving, it will be 0 mph.”
The Department of Transportation encourages drivers to ditch their car keys. That’s what Robert Ball, of Tudor City, is doing.
“I have a three-part commute: bike to subway to bus. It will take me about an hour,” he said. “It’s kind of a big imposition on the neighborhood, but it’s also a big commitment on the part of New York to make sure this happens. So it’s a big deal.”
MORE INFO: NYC DOT Gridlock Alert Days Information
From Sept. 18 through Oct. 5, the NYPD will be maintaining possible closures at police discretion at the following locations:
- FDR Drive between Whitehall Street and Willis Avenue Bridge/RFK Bridge
- Area bounded by 60th Street on the North, 34th Street on the South
- 1st Avenue on the East and 3rd Avenue on the West All Inclusive
- Area bounded by 54th Street on the North, 48th Street on the South, 1st Avenue
- On the East and Madison Avenue on the West All Inclusive
- 6th Avenue between 50th Street and 59th Street
- Grand Army Plaza between 58th Street and 60th Street
- 5th Avenue between 56th Street and 59th Street
- Madison Avenue between 42nd Street and 58th Street
- Madison Avenue between 76th Street and 77th Street
- Park Avenue between 76th Street and 77th Street
- FDR Drive Service Road between 48th Street and 49th Street
- 77th Street between Madison Avenue and Park Avenue
- 76th Street between Madison Avenue and Park Avenue
- 61st Street between 5th Avenue and Park Avenue
- 59th Street between 7th Avenue and 5th Avenue
- 58th Street between Broadway and Madison Avenue
- 57th Street between 7th Avenue and FDR Drive
- 56th Street between 6th Avenue and 5th Avenue
- 55th Street between 7th Avenue and Madison Avenue
- 54th Street between 7th Avenue and Madison Avenue
- 53rd Street between 7th Avenue and FDR Drive
- 52nd Street between 7th Avenue and 6th Avenue
- 50th Street between 6th Avenue and FDR Drive
- 51st Street between 7th Avenue and 1st Avenue
- 49th Street between 1st Avenue and FDR Drive Service Road
- 48th Street between 1st Avenue and FDR Drive Service Road
- 42nd Street between 7th Avenue and FDR Drive
- 34th Street between 7th Avenue and FDR Drive
- Little West Street between 1st Place and Battery Place
- Battery Place between 1st Place and Little West Street
- 1st Place between Battery Place and Little West Street