DETROIT (WWJ) – The North American International Auto Show’s annual Charity Preview is expected to bring thousands to Cobo Center on Friday, Jan. 19. The Detroit Police Department is encouraging individuals traveling downtown to leave for their destinations early and use alternate routes. Congestion and delays are expected on the southbound John C. Lodge Freeway beginning around 4 p.m.

Motorists on their way to Canada are advised to use the Ambassador Bridge instead of the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel. Workers exiting downtown are encouraged to use northbound thoroughfares such as Woodward Avenue, Cass Avenue or the I-75 Freeway. Motorists should be on the lookout for shuttle buses traveling westbound on Congress from nearby parking structures to drop off visitors at Cobo Center.

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Limousines, service cars, and handicap vehicles will be the only vehicles allowed to pass in front of Cobo Center. No vehicles will be allowed to stand or park near Cobo Center. All buses, shuttle vans and mini-buses will use Atwater, Doors 1, 2 & 3.

The Police Department will also coordinate the flow of traffic in these areas:
• Beginning at 4 p.m., Atwater becomes a one way going westbound. Buses and vehicles with designated placards only will be allowed to travel on Atwater Street behind the Renaissance Center to Joe Louis Arena. Bates at Jefferson will be restricted, and patrons going to Port Authority will be directed to the Miller parking garage.

• Congress between Cass and Shelby will become a one way at 4 p.m.

• Vehicles exiting off the southbound John C. Lodge Freeway at Larned will be allowed to go east on Larned only to parking areas until 4 p.m. The Larned exit will be closed at 4 p.m. until the Charity Preview concludes by Michigan State Police.

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• Washington Blvd. at Fort Street closes at 4:30 p.m.

• Griswold southbound will close at Larned beginning at 6 p.m.

• There will be No Parking, Tow Zone and No Standing zones the entire day on Jan. 19 ending at midnight on Congress/Washington Blvd. to Second, Shelby/Fort to Jefferson, Jefferson/Washington Blvd. to Randolph (both sides), Larned/ Washington Blvd. to Shelby, and Fort/First to Shelby.

• Traffic restrictions will be lifted after 11:30 p.m.

In addition, individuals can park at a City of Detroit parking facility and catch the Detroit People Mover to the Auto Show Charity Preview. The People Mover hours are 6:30 a.m. on January 19 to 2:30 a.m. on January 20. The fare is just 75 cents per ride. Children ages 5 and younger ride free. For more information, go to or call the Detroit Transportation Corporation from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday at (313) 224-2160.

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Get more information about the North American International Auto Show [here].