NYC street closures and travel restrictions for July 4 fireworks show

Fireworks Light Up Skies Over NYC On Fourth Of July

Spectators watch the 2012 Macy's Fireworks Spectacular over the Hudson River from Port Imperial on July 4, 2012. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

NEW YORK CITY (PIX11) – Fireworks over the East River are set to light up the sky between 9:20 and 9:50 p.m. Friday evening. Weather delays are not expected.

Visitors and commuters are urged to use public transportation. Closures begin around 3 p.m. and in some cases along the FDR they last until Saturday morning.

Planned restrictions:

  • Both directions of the FDR will close from Houston Street to 63rd Street beginning at 3 p.m. July 4th. Also, the FDR from the Battery Park Underpass to Houston Street will close from 4 p.m. until 1 a.m. July 5, or until cleanup is complete.
  • South Street in both directions from Montgomery to State Streets from 4 p.m. until 1 a.m., July 5, or until cleanup is complete.
  • Front Street from Old Slip to Dover Street from 4 p.m. until 1 a.m., July 5, or until cleanup is complete.
  • Eastbound Brooklyn Bridge traffic from 5 p.m. until 1 a.m., July 5, or until cleanup is complete. This includes walkways on the Bridge.
  • Westbound Brooklyn Bridge traffic from 5 p.m. until 1 a.m., July 5, or until cleanup is complete. This includes walkways on the Bridge.
  • The Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges will remain open to vehicle traffic.
  • Pedestrians will not be allowed on the Queensboro Bridge, and Roosevelt Island is not suggested as a viewing area. No viewing is allowed from the Brooklyn, Manhattan, or Williamsburg Bridges.
  • Staten Island Ferry service will be suspended on Friday, July 4 from 8:00 pm to 10:30 pm due to harbor closure for fireworks. The last boat from both terminals will be at 7:30 pm. The next boat will be at 10:30 pm from Whitehall and 11:00 pm from St. George. 30-minute service will be provided from 7:00 am to 7:30 pm.
  • East River Ferries will run until 5 p.m. Friday.

Where to get your spot for the show:

  • Grab a spot beginning at 4 p.m. Friday along the The FDR Drive from Houston to 42nd Streets. The city says to arrive no later than 7 p.m. Pedestrian access to the FDR Drive for viewing will be at 23rd, 38th, and 42nd Streets ONLY. Entrances to the FDR Drive are handicap accessible.
  • South Street Seaport
  • Montgomery & South Streets – from the North  (viewing along the FDR between Manhattan Bridge and Montgomery Street)
  • Brooklyn Bridge entry from St. James Pl. (Pearl St) & Wagner Pl. (viewing both north & South of the Brooklyn Bridge)
  • Broad Street and/or Old Slip at Water Street (viewing between Heliport & south side of Brooklyn Bridge)
  • Murray Bertraum HS track and Field facility – at the base of the Manhattan Bridge entrance at Market & Cherry Streets

Spectators are not allowed to bring large backpacks, lawn chairs or blankets, umbrellas, large coolers or alcohol to the fireworks show, NYPD said. Dogs are not allowed in the viewing areas, either.

Specific subway and bus directions are available here on nyc.gov.

Citi Bike will be offering valet bike parking and access. Here’s info on that. Wear a helmet and remember how to find your way back.

7 comments

  • Shahruk

    If anyone is planning on seeing the fireworks tonight use the Peeko app, it shows you the best nearby locations for the fireworks show tonight

  • Chris

    Your information is horrible. I think about 50k+ people were between 23-42 st on the east river and saw nothing!!! You ruined the show for us. Thank you.

  • John Madd

    Thanks for the False Information! The fireworks were not viewable whatsoever anywhere on the east side above Houston street. Thousands of people lined from 42 st down to the. Manhattan Bridge couldn’t see a thing. Major fail on Macys , the city, and the media and the cops on the scene for not letting us know the show was not along the east river like previous years, but instead down only at the Brooklyn Bridge.

  • ALJ

    “Grab a spot beginning at 4 p.m. Friday along the The FDR Drive from Houston to 42nd Streets. The city says to arrive no later than 7 p.m. Pedestrian access to the FDR Drive for viewing will be at 23rd, 38th, and 42nd Streets ONLY. Entrances to the FDR Drive are handicap accessible.”

    This was entirely false. I walked–with an out of town guest eager to see the fireworks–from the 23rd street entrance, after checking out the 42nd and 38th street entrances (BTW the FDR was NOT closed. There was only the river path, which was tiny at points.) all the way down past the Manhattan Bridge to Grand Street, and we could not see anything. Looking at the map of Manhattan, there were very few places in Manhattan from which to see the fireworks, even had proper information been provided, which it was not. I understand that the Mayor prioritizes Brooklyn over all other boroughs. That’s fine, if next year the fireworks are viewable solely from the Bronx, the year after Queens, and so forth.

  • Kerm

    I got to 38th and FDR at 3pm and waited (in the rain) until the fireworks. This was horrible. Took my daughter to show her the first time fireworks in NYC which I enjoyed so much as a kid. PIX11 should validate this information – prior to posting. There had to be thousands of people there including out-of-towners. Just awful and a waste of my family time.

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