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Baltimore Changes Traffic Patterns To Prepare For Grand Prix

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Getting around downtown is getting more complicated. The city is changing traffic patterns to accommodate this week’s Grand Prix.

Pat Warren reports it may require careful planning on your part to avoid getting stuck.

It is much anticipated.

“I think the event’s going to be great. I can’t wait,” said James Taylor, race supporter.

But it’s also somewhat disrupted.

“It’s a little bit of a mess with the race preparations,” said one person.

But it’s not often that your way to home or work becomes an international racetrack.

“It will be a learning experience but we have put a great deal of planning in to make it successful,” said Randall Scott, Traffic Division Director.

The Baltimore Department of Transportation starts putting road closures in effect after 7:30 p.m. Monday. They don’t happen all at once, but there are a lot of them.

“You’re talking about approximately two dozen intersections around the periphery and anything inside would be closed, as well,” said Scott.

After 7:30 p.m. Monday, Eutaw Street between Pratt and W. Camden closes after the Orioles game, reopens Wednesday evening and closes again on Friday. After 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, there will be closures on Charles Street between Pratt and Lombard and Charles between Conway and Lee. Sharp Street closes between Pratt and Conway and Camden Street between Paca and Eutaw. That’s just the beginning.

“It will have a profound impact on traffic and to the extent people plan well in advance, seek alternate routes or even adjust their schedules, delays can be minimized,” Scott said.

Downtowners appear up to the challenge.

“The benefits will outweigh all the—if you want to call it—the negatives of not allowing us to get around downtown,” said one.

“It’s not going to be something that’s lasting all year. It’s going to be a nice event. We can find a way to get around,” said Raymond Tyler, race supporter.

Organizers believe they’ve done their best to put on the best race possible with the least amount of inconvenience, although drivers are expected to be patient.

The biggest number of closings will take place Thursday.  For a complete list and alternate routes, go to the website www.gptraffic.com.

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