Security preparations underway for President Obama's visit
Jan 30, 2014 10:39 AM CST
Reported By Joseph Pleasant, Reporter - bio | email
President Obama will speak at Nashville's McGavock High School Thursday afternoon.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -
More than 100 Metro police officers will be assisting the U.S. Secret Service with security before, during, and after President Barack Obama's visit to Nashville Thursday afternoon.
"We have got some dedicated professionals who are working very hard both to keep the president safe, but also to make sure we are minimizing the inconvenience to folks who are trying to go about their daily lives when the president is visiting their community," Deputy White House Press Secretary Josh Ernest said.
Specifics of security for the president are not being released by the Secret Service, but Metro police said 120 traffic and flex officers will assist.
Drivers should expect brief road closures between the airport and McGavock High School when the president is en route.
While exact times are not being released, drivers should expect delays at the beginning of rush hour because that is when the president is expected to depart from the airport.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation will provide trucks to assist with the rolling roadblocks required for the presidential motorcade. The Tennessee Highway Patrol will also provide troopers and the Special Operations Division will assist the Secret Service with the pre-sweep of the motorcade route.
TDOT will also black out all traffic cameras along the president's motorcade route as it passes under the cameras.
Mirko Pasta employees are hopeful they can get a glimpse of the motorcade from their front door.
The restaurant is near the corner of Briley Parkway on Lebanon Pike, just down the road from McGavock High School.
"I think it would be pretty exciting for our customers," General Manager Rob Repass told News 2. "I am sure the staff would be excited about it too because it is not every day you get to see the president."
Stephen Nix owns a home near McGavock High School. He is also excited about possibly seeing the president in the neighborhood.
"It puts us on the map," he said. "What is happening at McGavock in education is wonderful. It is historic."
Nashville airport officials said people do not need to arrive any earlier for scheduled flights, but they should plan extra drive time due to road closures.
News 2 will be carrying the president's visit to Nashville live on-air and online at wkrn.com/live.