Everything Brooklynites need to know as the 2023 New York City Marathon: Road closures, best viewing spots, and local runners

marathon runners in Brooklyn
Thousands of runners will wind their way through Brooklyn as part of the New York City Marathon on Sunday.
File photo by Dean Moses

Marathon season is upon us, and the TCS New York City Marathon is ready to take over the streets of the five boroughs on Nov. 5. On the first Sunday in November, this iconic race brings together runners from around the world for an unforgettable 26.2-mile journey through the heart of the Big Apple. 

With the majority of the course open to spectators, there are plenty of opportunities to witness this incredible event. And if you’re in Brooklyn, you’re in for a treat as the borough comes alive with energy and excitement to support our runners.

Brooklyn Natives on Team Inspire

Three Brooklyn runners on Team Inspire, a group of marathoners with particularly meaningful reasons to run the race, are set to shine in the marathon on Sunday. 

Mandy Kwan, from Marine Park, is an immigrant from Hong Kong who will be running alongside three generations of her family. This year, she’s tackling her first marathon.

Tricia Quartey-Sagaille, from Park Slope, is running to raise awareness for Black maternal health after overcoming her own maternal health challenges.

Rahsaan Thomas and Claire Gelbart, from Prospect Heights, were formerly connected in San Quentin State Prison. They will be running for Empowerment Avenue, a nonprofit organization supporting incarcerated writers and artists.

Whether you’re running for a cause, cheering from the streets of Brooklyn or watching from afar, the TCS New York City Marathon is an event like no other! 

marathon runner in Brooklyn
Watching the race wind its way through Brooklyn is an annual tradition for many. File photo by Dean Moses

Spectator-Friendly Viewing in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is an integral part of the marathon route, and there are numerous spots throughout the borough where you can catch the action. Whether you’re a resident, a visiting fan or a cheering family member, here are some recommended viewing locations:

  • Fourth Avenue —Miles 2-4: As the runners exit the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge and make their way along Fourth Avenue, it’s a prime spot to catch the early excitement of the race. Easy subway access via the R train makes it a convenient location.
  • Fourth Avenue and Flatbush Avenue — Mile 8: This intersection is a bustling point along the route. Multiple subway lines, including B, D, N, Q, R, 2, 3, 4, 5 serve this area, so you can easily hop off the train to watch the action.
  • Williamsburg and Greenpoint —Miles 10-13: Head to these neighborhoods to experience the charm and support from locals. With the G, L, M and J subway lines nearby, you’ll have no trouble getting to your spot.
  • Pulaski Bridge — Mile 13.1: This iconic bridge connects Brooklyn to Queens and marks the race’s halfway point. While spectators are not allowed on the bridge itself, the Queens side offers fantastic views of the runners. Accessible by the 7, G and E subway lines.

Viewings in other NYC areas

  •  East Harlem — Miles 18-20: Also known as Spanish Harlem, this neighborhood is an excellent location to cheer on the runners, especially if you’re looking to immerse yourself in the rich Latinx culture. Accessible via the 6 subway line.
  • Charity Cheer Zone, First Avenue and 120th Street — Miles 19-20: Here, you can celebrate the thousands of runners who are raising funds for NYRR’s official charity partners. A fantastic way to support both the runners and their worthy causes. Accessible by the 6 subway line.
  • Fifth Avenue, East 90th Street-East 105th Street — Miles 23-24: This stretch of Fifth Avenue is a cultural hub and a crucial point to catch your runners before they enter Central Park. Accessible via the Q, 4, 5, 6 subway lines.
  • United Airlines Zone, Columbus Circle — Mile 26: Located at the finish line, you can witness the exhilarating moments as runners cross the finish line. Reachable via the A, C, D and 1 subway lines.

The marathon finishes at 67th Street on West Drive in Central Park, and there are two ways to access the final approach to the finish: Grandstand Seating, tickets available on Eventbrite, and the Standing Spectator Area. 

Road Closures

Certain streets and bridges will be temporarily closed to accommodate the runners. Here is a detailed list of road closures to help you plan your day:

Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge – Upper Level:

  • Closed from November 4 at 11:00 p.m. to November 5 at 4:00 p.m.

Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge – Lower Level Staten Island-bound:

  • Closed from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge – Lower Level Brooklyn-bound:

  • Closed from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Brooklyn Road Closures

  • 4th Avenue and 82nd Street: Closed from 6:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.
  • 74th Street before 6th Avenue: Closed from 6:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 80th Street: Closed from 6:45 a.m. to 1:16 p.m.
  • Bay Ridge Parkway and 6th Avenue: Closed from 6:45 a.m. to 1:16 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 63rd Street: Closed from 6:55 a.m. to 1:31 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 43rd Street: Closed from 6:55 a.m. to 1:47 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 22nd Street: Closed from 6:55 a.m. to 2:03 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 18th Street: Closed from 6:55 a.m. to 2:06 p.m.
  • 4th Avenue and 3rd Street: Closed from 7:30 a.m. to 2:19 p.m.
  • Flatbush Avenue and Lafayette Avenue: Closed from 7:00 a.m. to 2:35 p.m.
  • Lafayette and Classon Avenues: Closed from 7:00 a.m. to 2:51 p.m.
  • Bedford Avenue and Kosciuszko Street: Closed from 7:30 a.m. to 2:55 p.m.
  • Bedford Avenue between Wallabout Street and Lynch Street: Closed from 7:05 a.m. to 3:07 p.m.
  • Bedford Avenue and South 3rd Street: Closed from 7:05 a.m. to 3:23 p.m.
  • Manhattan Avenue past Bedford Avenue: Closed from 7:15 a.m. to 3:39 p.m.
  • Manhattan Avenue before Greenpoint Avenue: Closed from 7:15 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.
  • McGuiness Boulevard, approaching Pulaski Bridge: Closed from 7:15 a.m. to 3:55