Remember a few weeks ago when morning rush hour traffic was at a standstill as President Obama left from an overnight stay in Fairlawn and ate breakfast at a west Akron restaurant?
Get ready for the same traffic nightmare, only this time on the way home from work this afternoon.
The President will make a campaign speech at the Knight Center in downtown Akron, scheduled for 4pm, right in the middle of the rush hour commute home.
It all starts at Akron-Canton Airport between 3 p.m. and 3:30pm, on I-77 northbound. The Summit County Sheriff's Department will be involved with blocking off traffic and providing security on bridges and overpasses at the President's motorcade rolls toward Akron.
The President will be arriving from an earlier campaign event in Mansfield.
Sheriff Drew Alexander is a veteran of these visits and he says it's not a pleasant experience stopping traffic on a major interstate.
"It's a big problem and obviously it's inconvenient, but its something that has to be done, and we understand that. We take our lead from the Secret Service on that. They basically tell us what the route is going to be," says Alexander.
Alexander says they'll utilize what's called a rolling roadblock to escort Obama's motorcade from and to the airport. " We'll keep our cars jumping ahead one at a time, so that we always have several roadways blocked, but as the presidential entourage goes through then we open that back up. We just don't let traffic catch up to the caravan."
Alexander says for just one afternoon, roughly between 3 and 7, motorists who normally take I-77 north and southbound should map another route to get home.
"Take an alternate route. We're not sure the hour or the amount of time we're going to have to shut these down, or what time we're going to shut them down. I would suggest that if you don't have to come into the city, don't. And if you can stay off I-77 I'd certainly advise that," says Alexander.
Alexander tells AkronNewsNow.com there are alternate north-south routes you can choose. "There's a lot of north-south, Arlington, Massillon Road, Canton Road, a lot of ways to get in and out, and avoid 77."
Above all, Alexander says to exercise patience and plan for your afternoon commute to be longer than usual.
President Obama's visit is also altering other plans in downtown Akron. Several streets around the Knight Center will be closed off.
The Akron Summit County Public Library has postponed at least one event this afternoon because of the Obama rall .
METRO RTA also advising other routes and service may be impacted adversely because of the afternoon rush hour arrival, appearance and departure. Metro officials say the exact times, specific street closures and planned detours during the visit and for the president’s motorcade won't be made public for security reasons. If you are a Metro rider and need more information on how the President's visit will alter bus routes, you can call the customer services line at 330-762-0341.