Transit Sam, Week of July 3, 2013

Happy Fourth of July! With the holiday falling on a Thursday, the big getaway will be Wednesday afternoon. For Downtown, this means that the Holland Tunnel will be packed, and things will also be slow-going in the Battery Tunnel. Inbound traffic on Sunday will be a bear as well.

The Macy’s Annual Fourth of July Fireworks Celebration on Thursday will slow things down on the Far West Side, with effects reaching into Lower Manhattan. Staggered street closures will begin around 4:30 p.m., and end well into the wee hours in the area bounded by Tenth Ave., the West Side Highway, W. 14th St., and W. 59th St. Expect significant delays at the Battery and Holland tunnels with the fireworks expected to run from 9:20 p.m. to 9:50 p.m.

The Great 4th of July Festival will fully close Water St. between Fulton and Broad Sts. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday.

The 4th of July Pig Roast will fully close Cliff St. between Fulton and John Sts. 12 p.m. noon to 9 p.m. Thursday.

The 11th Annual Arab-American and North-African Cultural Street Festival will close Great Jones St. between Broadway and Lafayette St. 10 a.m. to
6 p.m. Saturday.

The N.Y.C. Unfolds Street Fair will close Broadway between Houston and Grand Sts. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.

In the Battery Park Underpass, one lane in each direction (between the F.D.R. and West St./Route 9A) will close 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. One tube of the underpass will close 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights, as well as 1 a.m. to 8 a.m. Saturday.

All Manhattan-bound lanes of the Brooklyn Bridge will close 11 p.m. Tuesday to 6 a.m. Wednesday, so watch out for extra traffic at the Manhattan Bridge and Battery Tunnel.

All lanes of the Manhattan-bound Lincoln Tunnel ‘helix’ (the spiral approach road to the tunnel) will close 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday. This means a lot of the inbound traffic will be diverted to the Holland Tunnel, and onto Varick, West, and Canal Sts.

Rector St. will close between West and Greenwich Sts. 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday through Thursday nights, through Wednesday, July 17.

For more street closure news, follow me on Twitter @gridlocksam.


From the mailbag:

Dear Transit Sam,

If I am making a right turn and there is a bike lane to the right of me, who has the right of way?  What if the bike rider has a red light when I have a green one?  It’s very difficult to see if a bike is coming, especially at night. What’s the correct answer?

Gary, New Jersey

Dear Gary,

If there is no special signal for the bike rider or no signal at all, then the bike rider has the right-of-way.  If the bike rider has a red light and you a green then you have the right-of-way.  That being said, if this is in N.Y.C., few bike riders obey red lights so you shouldn’t assume you can go safely (for the cyclist especially) just because you have the ROW.

Transit Sam

Send me your traffic, transit, and biking questions: transitsam@downtownexpress.com.