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U.N. General Assembly brings heightened police presence, widespread traffic delays to NYC as public is urged to be "a little extra vigilant"

Delays and detours due to U.N. General Assembly
Delays and detours due to U.N. General Assembly 01:02

Residents and workers in New York City will face ongoing setbacks throughout this week, as diplomats from across the world arrive for the 77th United Nations General Assembly. The event, which annually impacts commuter traffic and public transit schedules in Manhattan, will cause planned and spontaneous delays, road closures and frozen zones across the city. 

The law enforcement presence will be more visible while the current General Assembly is in session. In addition to the police stationed along roadways, particularly those in the immediate vicinity of U.N. Headquarters along the East River, other officers are patrolling waterways on boats.

Traffic delays will mostly impact New York City's east side around the headquarters building. As CBS New York reported, drivers should prepare for the most significant roadblocks on Monday, a Gridlock Alert Day, when the worst traffic is expected. People are advised to avoid driving through midtown Manhattan if possible, although delays and detours will also impact the city's bus and subway routes, the station reported.

"There will be hundreds of motorcades moving around the city, sometimes simultaneously," said NYPD department chief Kenneth Corey at a news conference on Friday. "There will be security checkpoints. There will be street closures, detours and other driving restrictions, including unannounced traffic freezes."

Corey urged anyone traveling in Manhattan during the General Assembly to use public transportation, which he said would be faster and safer than driving. He noted at the time that police were not aware of any credible safety threats, but asked people "to be a little extra vigilant in the coming week."

The New York City Police Department shared a detailed rundown of expected traffic delays and possible road closures last week. Included on the extensive list of Manhattan areas that police said would likely be impacted is a 5 1/2-mile stretch of FDR Drive — the city's east side parkway, which is about 10 miles end to end — from Whitehall Street at the southern tip of the island up to 42nd Street in midtown, where the U.N. headquarters building is located.

In an advisory shared on Twitter Monday morning, the NYPD announced specific road restrictions that will remain in effect throughout the day, or in some cases, for the duration of the General Assembly.

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