NFL Draft week kicks off in Detroit with hundreds of thousands expected this week

Posted at 6:41 AM, Apr 22, 2024

It's finally here – the NFL Draft is set to kick off Thursday and bring in hundreds of thousands of fans to Downtown Detroit over the course of the week.

Reminder: You can watch the NFL Draft on Channel 7 and our three "Detroit on the Clock" specials on Thursday at 7 p.m., Friday at 6 p.m. and Saturday at 11 a.m.

Full coverage of the NFL Draft here

The latest round of road closures for the NFL Draft will likely make your Monday morning commute even trickier if you're headed Downtown.

Right now, Woodward Ave. is closed from Larned to State streets, and the changes also impact Congress, Monroe and Fort streets.

VIDEO: Phase 3 of road closures are now in effect

Phase 3 of road closures for NFL Draft are in effect

Due to the closures, Detroit offices at the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center will be closed the entire week and city staff will be available remotely.

Some of the road closures have been causing confusion for people heading into the city or people who live downtown.

VIDEO: How people are planning to navigate the closures:

'You got to be smart about it.' How people plan to navigate draft road closures

They say they've been handling it as best as they can, especially with all the congestion, but people are finding their way around now that the fourth phase of road closures are in place.

"We parked a long way away. Walked a mile," Mike Briscoe said.

Mike and Laura Briscoe drove from Macomb Township to meet their daughters, Megan and Erica, as well as granddaughters to check out the preparations underway for the NFL Draft.

"It takes a lot of time to prepare, but the city does a great job and I think communication is really important," Erica said.

They went and shopped around, navigating the open sidewalks through the closed roads to get draft gear and memorabilia.

"Lots of cool shirts, hats, there's a ton of things," Megan said.

When it comes to navigating the closures, Mariah Stefani and her partner, Katie McGahan, found themselves a little lost.

"We went out last night, trying to get home from the other side of Campus Martius, and all the streets were closed, so we had to take a really long way around," Stefani said.

As Detroit gets ready to welcome the visitors, most residents are embracing the chaos as best as they can.

"It's hard when you live here to deal with all the people coming in, but it's fine. all the things that downtown is doing are a lot of fun, like all the events that are going on," McGahan said.