DETROIT, June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick has announced that Detroit will honor the 2004 NBA Champion Pistons with a parade and rally on Thursday, June 17. The parade will begin at 11:30 a.m. at Chene Street and East Jefferson and will then travel west on Jefferson toward Woodward Avenue. The parade will end at Jefferson and Washington Boulevard. A rally at Hart Plaza immediately follows the parade. All Pistons fans and celebrants planning to attend the parade and rally should be prepared for weather conditions and dress accordingly. Fans also are encouraged to bring plenty of water, as public drinking fountains along the route are limited. The City of Detroit expects approximately one million fans. Those visiting or working in downtown Detroit should be prepared for large crowds. Portable toilets are available along the parade route and at Hart Plaza. A viewing area for people with disabilities is available at the southwest corner of Chene and Jefferson. STREET CLOSURES * Jefferson between Washington Boulevard and Chene will be closed at 9 a.m., except for eastbound Jefferson between Bates and the Chrysler Freeway, which will remain open. * Traffic exiting the Detroit Windsor Tunnel may proceed east to the Chrysler Freeway. * Jefferson Avenue will reopen at the conclusion of the parade. PARKING Parking will be available at all Detroit Municipal Parking Department garages and lots downtown. However, City officials warn motorists to look out for a popular parking scam that involves con artists posing as attendants; they collect money from drivers waiting to park. Motorists should pay only those parking attendants who are authorized to collect funds. Employees of authorized parking lots and garages wear badges that indicate the parking facility is licensed by the City of Detroit. Individuals who park in privately-owned lots and garages should not pay more than the posted rates. Parking lot operators are reminded that rates may not be increased without the approval of the Detroit Consumer Affairs Department. Such approval must be requested 30 days in advance. The Municipal Parking Department recommends the following parking facilities: * Cobo Roof Deck Garage 625 W. Congress * Cobo Hall Garage 475 Washington Blvd. * Cobo Arena Garage 200 Civic Center Drive * Millennium Garage 432 E. Congress * Premier Underground 1206-08 Woodward Ave. * Grand Circus Park Garage 1600-01 Woodward Ave. * First & Bagley Garage 1731 First St. * 604 Abbott Lot 604 Abbott (near Michigan & Third) * Ford Underground Garage 30 E. Jefferson * Greektown Garage 660 Macomb * Joe Louis Arena Garage 900 W. Jefferson Downtown parking patrons should look for bright yellow and blue signs, which identify MPD facilities. For more information on parking, call the Detroit Municipal Parking Department at (313) 967-1600. DETROIT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION During the Pistons celebration events, the Detroit Department of Transportation will alter the following regular service routes and boarding locations: * The westbound Jefferson route will travel along Jefferson, to Mt. Elliott, to Larned/Congress, to Woodward, and to the Grand Circus Park boarding zone * The eastbound route will be the reverse of the westbound route. The following locations are designated for boarding: - The Woodward and Hamilton routes will leave the Beaubien and Jefferson loading zone via Beaubien to eastbound Congress, instead of via eastbound Jefferson. - Dexter and Fenkell coaches will lay over and board passengers on northbound Woodward, between Congress and Larned. - Overflow plan: In the event that coaches are unable to use Larned or Woodward, Cadillac Square will serve as a bypass. All eastbound coaches from Woodward and Randolph, as well as the Dexter and Hamilton routes, will layover and board/exit passengers at Cadillac Square. The Mack coach will not serve Cadillac Square. RESTRICTIONS ON SPECTATOR AREAS To ensure public safety, the City of Detroit Police Department has placed the following restrictions on the parade route area: * No stopping, standing, or parking on freeways, freeway entrances, and exit ramps. * No pedestrians or vehicles will be allowed on any medians in the downtown area along the parade route. * No one is allowed access around any downtown statues or monuments, including the Spirit of Detroit, the Joe Louis Memorial, the Dodge Fountain at Hart Plaza, and the Labor Legacy monument. * Under no circumstances will fans be allowed to cross parade barriers along the parade route or at Hart Plaza, and no pedestrians will be allowed in the street during the parade procession. Police will remove any violators. * No vendors will be allowed in the central business district without prior approval from the City of Detroit Consumer Affairs Department. Food and beverage vendors will be available on site at Hart Plaza. Prohibited at Hart Plaza are: * Alcoholic beverages * Glass containers * Roller skates or inline skates * Skateboards * Open fires * Pets For more information, go to the City's Web site at http//www.ci.detroit.mi.us.
SOURCE City of Detroit