Getting Around Lower Manhattan

The Labor Day crunch Thursday and Friday means a variety of gridlock on all major roads and crossings, including the Battery and Holland Tunnels, as folks squeeze in one last getaway before the unofficial end of summer. The roads servicing the big three airports will be even more crowded this Labor Day weekend compared to last year with airlines still trying to handle the backlog of passengers affected by Irene, and air travel being significantly up this summer season.
Chambers St. from Greenwich St. to West St. (runs westbound) will be completely closed from 10 p.m. Friday night to 10 a.m. Saturday morning for resurfacing. Traffic will be detoured to Greenwich St. and Murray St. in order to reach West St.
Thousands will join together on the morning of September 10th in holding hands along the Hudson River Esplanade below Chambers St. to commemorate September 11th. To register, please visit www.handinhand911.org. After the event, many local streets will start to close in preparation for the official 9/11 ceremonies, which will be attended by President Obama, former President Bush and other dignitaries. Drivers should avoid lower Manhattan through the afternoon with freezes in effect on the FDR Drive and West St. below 14th St.

From the mailbag:

Dear Transit Sam,
I’m curious. Why were roughly 90 tour bus parking spots removed a couple months ago from the South St. Seaport area? The loss of our tour bus parking spaces at this location has made it more difficult to park and avoid parking tickets. Thanks for any help you might be able to provide.
Anonymous via e-mail

Dear Anonymous,
I checked with the city and prior to 2009, there were roughly 80 available spaces for tour buses near the Seaport along the FDR Viaduct. But because of ongoing construction on the East River Esplanade, the spaces were removed. It’s not a total loss, however. There are a few additional spaces closer to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza further down South St. along with some spaces north of the Seaport near the Manhattan Bridge. In addition, with the 9/11 Memorial opening to the public on September 12th, new, metered parking spaces with time limits will be available Ln lower Manhattan for tour buses to use.
Transit Sam

Any questions on the President’s upcoming visits to NYC in September? Just received a parking ticket? If so, send me an e-mail at TransitSam@downtownexpress.com or write to Transit Sam, 611 Broadway, Suite 415, New York, NY 10012