Road closures part of Thanksgiving festivities

Candice Williams
The Detroit News

If you’re among the tens of thousands expected to head downtown Thursday for America’s Thanksgiving Parade, the Turkey Trot or the Detroit Lions game, you’ll want to take note of street closures, parking and bus reroutes.

Be sure to bundle up, too.

Temperatures are expected to be in the low to mid 40s Thursday with a chance of rain, according to the National Weather Service. That’s the average temperature for this time of year, said Jordan Dale, meteorologist with the weather service in White Lake Township.

If there is rain, it’s expected to be light and not put a damper on the parade, which steps off at 8:50 a.m. at Kirby and Woodward.

Thursday also marks a critical turning point for the M-1 Rail project along Woodward. According to officials, the orange cones will be removed and Woodward completely reopened in time for the parade. As of Wednesday some of cones already have been removed, said Dan Lijana, spokesman for M-1 Rail project. Surely a welcome sight for motorists.

“We’re all happy to reach this important milestone,” Lijana said.

For the third year the Detroit People Mover is offering free rides Thursday from its 13 stations to help visitors get around downtown Detroit. The closest stations for the parade are Grand Circus Park, Broadway and Cadillac.

The People Mover will run on a holiday schedule from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Service will resume at 9 a.m. Friday. The free rides are offered this year through a partnership with Sprint.

“We’re excited to have a new partner in Sprint on this special day so that area families can come together to enjoy downtown events,” DPM General Manager Barbara Hansen said in a statement.

The People Mover is coordinating with the Detroit Department of Transportation for bus riders transfer Thursday to the Eastside routes affected by parade traffic.

Affected routes include No. 7 Cadillac-Harper, No. 10 Chene, No. 31 Mack, No. 34 Gratiot and No. 48 Van Dyke. DDOT customers can board the routes at Bricktown Station on Beaubien, north of Larned. A DDOT transfer or fare in required. East-side routes will begin service to the Rosa Parks Transit Center at 6 p.m.

The Turkey Trot, which takes place from 7 to 8:30 a.m. Thursday, will affect the following bus routes:

No. 19 Fort, No. 27 Joy and No. 29 Linwood. These routes will come in and out by Michigan via Trumbull.

Here is a list of closures beginning as early as Wednesday:

■ Woodward Avenue from W. Grand Blvd. to Warren will be closed from 5 p.m. Wednesday through 2 p.m. Thursday.

■ Woodward Avenue from Warren to Jefferson will be closed from 2 a.m. Thursday until the parade ends.

Emergency vehicles can cross Woodward Avenue at Warren, Mack/MLK, Alexandrine, Montcalm and Adams.

Streets with limited access beginning at noon on Wednesday:

■ Amsterdam/Piquette from Cass to John R

■ Harper from Cass to John R

■ Palmer from Cass to John R

■ Ferry from Cass to John R

■ Farnsworth/Putnam from Cass to John R

These streets will close starting at 5 a.m. Thursday:

■ Michigan at Cass

■ Fort Street from Trumbull to Woodward

■ Congress from Shelby to Randolph

■ Larned from Shelby to Randolph

■ Shelby from Congress to Michigan

■ Michigan from Cass to Woodward

■ Monroe from Woodward to Randolph

■ Lafayette Boulevard from Trumbull to Griswold

■ Washington Boulevard from Adams to Congress

■ Atwater from Civic Center Drive to Third

According to the city, these streets will reopen, including Michigan Avenue and Washington Boulevard, after the Turkey Trot at about 10 a.m.

Also closed during the Turkey Trot: the southbound Lodge exits at W. Jefferson/Cobo and Larned Street and the northbound Lodge exit at West Jefferson. The Larned exit will reopen when the Turkey Trot ends.

The Detroit Municipal Parking Department recommends parking in the following garages Thursday:

■ Ford Underground Garage, 30 East Jefferson. Hours: 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. The cost: $10.

■ Millennium Garage, 423 W. Congress. Open 24 hours. The cost: $10.

Motorists heading to Ford Field for the Lions game against the Minnesota Vikings at 12:30 p.m. Thursday are encouraged to use the following garages:

■ Grand Circus Park Garage, 1600-01 Woodward Avenue. Open 24 hours. The cost: $20.

■ Premier Underground Garage, 1206-08 Woodward Avenue. Hours: 5 a.m. to 3 p.m. No vehicles are admitted after 3 p.m. The cost: $10.

(313) 222-2311