Lock down: Street closures, restrictions for Obama visit
The last time Barack Obama came to the Pavilion on the Downtown Mall he set an attendance record for the facility. And he was just a candidate for President. This time, as President, his visit could turn the Downtown Mall upside down.
(The County has also issued traffic advisory concerning the President's route from the airport to the Downtown Mall. The information is at the bottom of this post)
Indeed, as the following list of street closures and restrictions indicate, it's going to be a challenge to get to see the President (Arrive early!).
Several streets will be closed during the visit, and pedestrian and vehicle access may be restricted to accommodate the security needs of the Secret Service. The majority of closures will occur between 6:30pm and 9pm. Most notably, the area typically used for Pavilion events by pedestrians will be closed at 2pm.
Beginning at Noon tomorrow, the following roads will be closed and parking will not be permitted on them (they will re-open at 9pm): 7th Street/8th Street south of Market Street surrounding the City Hall Annex and 4th Street between Market Street and Water Street.
From 6:30pm to 9pm the following roads will be closed to traffic and parking (and most pedestrians):
Water Street–-10th Street to just east of the parking lot entrance on the south side of Market Street east of 5th Street SE.
Market Street–-7th Street to 9th Street will be closed to vehicle but remain open to pedestrians.
8th Street NE–-East Jefferson Street to Market Street
9th Street/Avon Street (Belmont Bridge)–-Garrett Street to Market Street
10th Street–-Market Street to Water Street
Old Avon Street–-East South Street to end (goes under Belmont Bridge)
In addition to those above, there are more restrictions:
Water Street (both sides)–-Belmont Bridge to 100 feet east of stair case to Lexis parking deck will be closed all day Friday
Lot under Belmont Bridge will be closed from 6:30pm to 9pm
East High Street–Lexington Avenue to 250 Bypass will be closed from 5pm to 9pm.
Market Street between 7th Street NE and 8th Street NE will be closed from Noon to 4:30pm. Voter registration only, 4:30pm to 9pm. No parking.
7th Street NE (west side)–-4 spaces north of Market Street closed.
Current detour on Water Street will be removed by noon on Friday allowing 2-way traffic to resume between 2nd Street SE and 2nd Street SW
Two detours will be available for those wanting to cross Belmont Bridge. Southbound traffic on 9th Street will go to Market Street, Carlton Road, and Monticello Avenue. Northbound traffic on Avon Street will go to Garrett Street, 2nd Street SE, Water Street, Ridge-McIntire Street, Market Street, 7th Street NE and High Street.
Bus service around the City will stop at 6:45pm and resume at 8:45pm.
No signs in Pavilion allowed. You'll be asked to throw them away. Basically, as you line up to enter the Pavilion prepare to be searched by Secret Service agents like you would at the airport.
The Downtown Doggie Howl-O-Ween event will be postponed to Saturday, October 30 from 6pm to 8:30pm.
County traffic advisory:
Based on information confirmed late this afternoon by the White House press office, we are revising our traffic advisory to extend the hours of potential impact to include from 6:00 pm until 9:15 pm and are strongly encouraging motorists to avoid the Route 29 area entirely during that timeframe as extended closures of Route 29 including intersections and adjacent roads will be occurring.
While we are not able to disclose exact route information related to President Obama’s visit to our community tomorrow due to security concerns, we want to inform the public that we anticipate road and intersection closures along the Route 29 corridor from Charlottesville Albemarle airport into downtown Charlottesville in the timeframe between 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm as the Presidential party arrives at and departs from the airport. Because the situation is fluid and the route and timing of the motorcade could change at any point, motorists should anticipate that travel on, across and in the vicinity of Route 29 will be very problematic during that three hour period and should avoid that area as much as possible. Anyone planning to drive in that area during the affected time frame should expect significant delays and should take extended closures into account as they are making their plans. We appreciate the public’s patience and cooperation as we work to provide a safe and welcoming environment for President Obama’s visit.