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May Day rally to shut down DTLA streets tomorrow

By Hayley Fox
Published: Tuesday, April 30, 2013, at 01:34PM
Hayley Fox/blogdowntown

Last year's May Day rally included people trumpeting a wide range of issues. This man from Venice Beach called himself "Nowhere Man" at the 2012 event, and said he's been part of the Occupy movement since it's inception.

Tomorrow is the annual May Day rally that winds through DTLA in celebration of International Workers' Day.

This massive annual demonstration foregrounds issues including immigration reform and workers' rights, but it has also become a forum for people to trumpet their own social or legal cause of choice.

Last year's May Day event was heavily dominated by Occupy protesters (many in Guy Fawkes masks) — toting signs, dishing out free food and clothing and congregating in certain "camps" in and along the rally route.

But there is always an array of people who come out to participate in the rally and trumpet a range of causes. In 2012, some of these issues included LGBT rights, anti-Arizona factions and the legalization of pot in California.

This year's march begins at noon at Olympic and Broadway, and will then head north up Broadway towards Cesar Chavez Avenue. There will be two other main marching groups assembling at different locations throughout Downtown, and beginning at staggered start times.

According to LADOT's transportation maps, in addition to Broadway's closure, portions of Central Avenue, 5th Street, Cesar Chavez and Main Street will also be shut down throughout the day.

LADOT officials are expecting approximately 14,000 people at the May Day event, but said they have a contingency plan in place to shut down additional streets if the crowd is larger than they anticipated.

Some streets may close as early as 6 a.m. on Wednesday and reopen as late as 9 p.m.

On top of these surface street closures, the 101 southbound ramp to Broadway will be closed starting at 11;30 a.m., as will the Spring Street offramp.

See the map below for May Day street closures:

Source: LADOT Special Traffic Operations plan maps | Map: See map in larger window.

Map credit: Machiko Yasuda

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