Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, city officials and the Boston Athletic Association discussed safety at the upcoming Boston Marathon on Friday morning.
"It's a time when Boston comes alive in a special way," Walsh said. He encouraged spectators to avoid driving and use public transportation if at all possible on Monday, as well as this weekend, when numerous marathon-related events are also scheduled.
"We have a comprehensive safety plan in place," the mayor said. "The past four years we've greatly increased public safety resources, and this year will be no different."
He stressed that there is no credible threat to this year's marathon. This year marks the fourth Boston Marathon since the 2013 bombings that killed three spectators and wounded more than 260 others.
This year, runners and spectators are being asked not to bring backpacks, bulky items, coolers, glass bottles or containers capable of carrying more than 1 liter of liquid, large sticks, signs or poles with them to the race. In addition, anyone bringing extra clothing or possessions is being asked to carry them in clear plastic bags.
Drones are also not going to be allowed, other than two tethered drones that public safety officials are using at the starting line in Hopkinton to keep a close eye on the crowds. Up to 1 million spectators are expected to line the course.
"We've got a busy weekend ahead," Boston Police Commissioner William Evans said, mentioning Saturday's B.A.A. 5K, the children's relay, and the fact that there will be a Boston Red Sox home game and a Boston Bruins home playoff game on Monday in addition to the marathon. He said there will be a large police presence, both uniformed and undercover, and there will be check points as well.
The following streets will be shut down for the marathon on Monday:
- 5 a.m.: Charles Street, adjacent to the Boston Common will close.
- 8 a.m.: All streets east of Massachusetts Avenue (as well as Massachusetts Turnpike Exit 22) will close.
- 9 a.m.: All streets west of Massachusetts Avenue in the Kenmore Square Audubon Circle area will close.
- 8:30 a.m.: All streets in the Brighton area leading to the route will close.
Boylston Street, from Berkeley Street to Arlington Street, will close at noon on Sunday, April 16. The street will reopen at 8 p.m. on Monday. The city expects to open all other streets at 7 p.m.
Walsh urged people to check boston.gov/marathon for further details on street closures.