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PR- 164-04
June 25, 2004


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly today announced the City's traffic plans for the Republican National Convention.  The Convention will take place Monday, August 30th through Thursday, September 2nd.  Starting today, the City is reaching out to area businesses to spread the word and will continue to do so over the next two months to minimize potential disruptions in the Madison Square Garden area.

"The Republican National Convention going to attract thousands of people to the City during a slow time in the summer, giving our economy a $250 million dollar shot in the arm and creating several thousand jobs in the process," said Mayor Bloomberg.  "The event will require some street closures, but that's nothing new for our City which hosts so many major public events each year.  We are encouraging all attendees to use mass transit, giving all of them MetroCards, and 19 of the 23 delegate hotels are less than a mile away from the Garden. If you aren't in the area around the Garden, you probably won't even know the convention is in town - unless a delegate asks for directions. In that case, do as Ed Koch says and Make Nice."

Street closures in the immediate vicinity of Madison Square Garden will begin on Sunday, August 29th and are as follows:

  • West 31st to West 33rd Streets from 6th to 9th Avenues will be closed to vehicle traffic.  Between 7th and 9th Avenues, pedestrians will need to have a business-related purpose to enter (like New Year's Eve in Times Square).

  • West 32nd between 6th and 7th Avenue will be closed to vehicle traffic. It will become a Pedestrian Mall, providing access to Penn Station up through Penn Station's 7th Avenue entrance under the MSG marquee. People will be able to enter Penn Station through the entrance at 34th & 7th Avenue but not from 8th Avenue.

  • 7th Avenue will be closed from 42nd to 29th Streets during the 13 hours when the convention is in session. At other times, at least one lane will be open in the MSG area and all lanes will be open elsewhere.

  • 8th Avenue will be closed during the convention hours from 23rd to 34th Streets. Since 31st Street at 8th Avenue will be a designated protest area, additional lane or avenue closures are likely south of that point at other times during the week.

  • The MTA will be re-routing bus service on both 7th and 8th Avenues.

The Convention will not be in session during rush hour and it has only one session during the day, on Monday from 10:00am to 1:00pm. The evening sessions will take place Monday through Thursday, from 8:30pm to 11:00pm. 

New York City gets 100,000 visitors a day and in August there are 150,000 less people making the daily commute into the City. 

For more information, New Yorkers should call 311.


Edward Skyler/Robert Lawson   (212) 788-2958

Paul Browne   (NYPD)
(646) 610-6700

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