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Numerous NYC streets to close Sunday for the marathon

Runners cross the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge during the 2019

Runners cross the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge during the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon. This year's race is scheduled for Sunday. Credit: AFP via Getty Images/JOHANNES EISELE

Long Islanders heading into and out of New York City on Sunday will face even more traffic gridlock than usual — this time, due to the 50th running of the marathon.

Numerous streets, river crossings and other thoroughfares across Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island will be closed to motor vehicles to make room for the runners and onlookers.

Public transportation, particularly the subways and Long Island Rail Road, will be the quickest ways to navigate the city.

Sunday marks the 50th running of what’s now called the TCS New York City Marathon. The last time the 26.2-mile race was run, in 2019, 53,639 people from 140 counties finished, with an average time of 4:35:52, according to the event’s website.

The 2020 marathon was canceled due to the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic — before the availability of the vaccine.

On Sunday, starting in the morning until evening, the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge will be closed to vehicles, as will be the Pulaski Bridge, parts of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, eastbound lanes of the Queensboro Bridge, and the Willis Avenue Bridge. The upper level of the Verrazzano is closing to traffic in both directions beginning at 11 p.m. on Saturday.

But those closures don’t even scratch the surface.

Numerous streets and highways are covered by marathon closures, including parts of Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn, Vernon Boulevard in Queens, and 59th Street, Columbus Circle, Central Park West in Manhattan, Victory Boulevard in Staten Island, and Third Avenue in the Bronx.

Most of the closures are to be in effect from about 7 a.m. until about 7 p.m. Sunday.

It’s not just private vehicles affected. "The Central Park Transverse Roads at 65th, 79th and 96th Streets will be closed for most of the day and buses will not be permitted to cross Fifth Avenue during the race. Numerous other bus diversions will take place along the marathon route across the city," the MTA said on its website.

Some Citi Bike stations will be out of service, too.

For a comprehensive list of street closings, check traffic advisories at the New York City Department of Transportation website, at www1.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/home/home.shtml.

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