NYC Expands Pedestrian Space Around Rockefeller Center

NYC Expands Pedestrian Space Around Rockefeller Center

By Wayne Sheppard

Last month, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a pilot program to pedestrianize the streets around Rockefeller Plaza and Radio City Music Hall during the holiday season. Beginning on Friday, November 29, 2019, and continuing into early January, movable barriers will create full or partial street closures to alleviate foot traffic in one of the city’s most congested areas.

Rockefeller Center Street Closures

The planned street closures are as follows:

49th and 50th Streets

Between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, these side streets will be open to foot traffic only during these hours:

  • Monday through Thursday, 2 p.m. – midnight
  • Friday, 1 p.m. – midnight
  • Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. – midnight

Fifth Avenue

Movable barriers will eliminate a lane of traffic on both the east and west sides of the street between 48th and 52nd Streets. Additionally, turns will not be permitted on 47th, 49th, or 51st Streets. Barriers will be placed during the following hours:

  • Monday through Friday, 5 p.m. (or earlier) – midnight
  • Saturday and Sunday, 12 p.m. (or earlier) – midnight

Sixth Avenue

Barriers may be placed on the east side of the street between 48th and 52nd Streets to eliminate one lane of traffic. The city will monitor Sixth Avenue and place or remove barriers based on crowd volume.

In addition, MTA buses will bypass 48th to 52nd Streets.

The New York City Police Department and Department of Transportation (DOT) will monitor the area around the clock to adjust the barriers as needed, during periods of unusual pedestrian volume or extreme weather.