Center City traffic restrictions in effect for Trump, GOP visit

- Drivers and pedestrians both face restrictions because of President Donald Trump's visit to the Republican congressional retreat in Philadelphia.

The congressional delegation -- a joint gathering of House and Senate Republicans -- is staying at the Lowes Philadelphia Hotel on 12th and Market streets from Wednesday through Friday.

Streets around the hotel will be closed during Trump's visit, Thursday from 6am until 6pm.

Starting 6am Thursday, pedestrians will not be allowed along:
  the 1100 and 1200 blocks of Market Street,
  12th Street from Chestnut to Filbert streets,
  13th Street from Chestnut to Market.

That’s for the Secret Service’s secure perimeter.

From 8am Thursday to at least 6pm Thursday night, these roads will be closed:
  13th Street from Chestnut to Market streets,
  Market Street from 11th to Juniper streets,
  12th Street from Chestnut to Arch streets.

Drivers should also expect rolling road closures during dignitary movement on Thursday.

Plus, these parking restrictions will be in effect from 6am Thursday until they’re reopened for drivers:
  13th Street from Chestnut to Market streets,
  Market Street from 11th to Juniper streets,
  12th Street from Chestnut to Arch streets.

The parking authority and police say they’ll tow any cars on those streets to the PPA impoundment lot at 2501 S. Weccacoe Avenue in South Philadelphia.

SEPTA will make adjustments to Market-Frankford Line and City Trolley service, and detour a number of bus routes in Center City, during Thursday’s visit by President Trump and Vice President Pence to the Republican Congressional Caucus’ annual meeting.

Road closures and other restrictions will be in place surrounding the event, which will be held at the Loews Hotel at 12th and Market Streets. As a result, the following changes will be in effect at the start of service on Thursday, Jan. 26:

13th Street Station, for the Market-Frankford Line and City Trolley routes, will be closed. Market-Frankford Line trains will bypass 13th Street; customers can exit and enter at 11th Street and 15thStreet. City Trolley Routes 10, 11, 13, 34 and 36 will begin and end service at 15th Street Station.

Bus routes that normally travel through the area bordered east/west by 11th and 13th Streets, and north/south by Filbert and Chestnut Streets, will be on detour due to road closures. Please note that there may be additional routes put on detour and routing changes made throughout the day as road conditions warrant. For up-to-date information on bus detours, go to the System Status page of SEPTA’s website at http://www.septa.org/realtime/status/system-status.shtml or follow @SEPTA_Bus on Twitter.

Customers using Jefferson Station will need to enter and exit at 11th Street or Filbert Street. The main headhouse on Market Street will be closed.

Also, please note that the regularly scheduled January SEPTA Board meeting will proceed as scheduled at 3 p.m. on Thursday. Members of the public who are attending the meeting can access SEPTA headquarters through the rear of the building, off 13th Street, or the underground concourse.

The city says to expect demonstrations while Trump is in town. The Office of Special Events has an application for one -- 11am to 3pm Thursday -- that could draw 3,000 people. Still, other protests without permits are anticipated, so there may be other road closures or delays throughout the day.

The purpose of the congressional Republicans’ annual policy retreat is to hear from the president.

This comes as Trump's presidency gets off to a rocky start. Republicans hope to come together and chart a course forward on a range of policy issues, particularly repealing and replacing former President Barack Obama's health care law.

The two-day conclave of work sessions, speeches and schmoozing gets underway Wednesday, with the high point coming Thursday with Trump's lunchtime speech. Lawmakers hope the gathering will help solidify their agenda for the year.

Lawmakers will also hear from British Prime Minister Theresa May, the first time a foreign head of state has addressed such a gathering, and football star Peyton Manning will appear.

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