Getting a box truck into NYC, smoothly.

I have to pick up some office furniture and equipment in Manhattan tomorrow night. I’m going to rent a box truck from U-Haul, since the stuff won’t fit in a normal SUV or van.

My question is, how tight is security in Manhattan these days? Are there some roadways where I can’t take the truck? What’s the best way to get into and out of Manhattan easily, without getting arrested or pulled over on suspicion of terrorism?

I’ll be coming from Connecticut on I-95, and the equipment is at 1270 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York.

There shouldn’t be any security issues, as far as I know. Just don’t go crashing though any toll plaza gates. Only in the few months right after 9/11 were there really checkpoints where they were randomly flagging down trucks for searches. I haven’t seen one in quite a while.

Not 100% sure if this is the best route, but I would probably take I-95 to the Bruckner Expressway (278) to the Triboro bridge (to Manhattan, not Queens ;)). Unfortunately, trucks aren’t allowed on the FDR or the Hudson Parkway, so it looks like you’ll have to go local from the Triboro – at night you should be able to do pretty well sailing down 2nd avenue all the way to 51st St, then you can cut across town over to 6th ave. But really, once in manhattan, it’s up to you how to get to your final destination. For the most part it’s a numbered grid so it’s hard to get lost.

If you want to avoid the toll on the triboro, the 3rd avenue bridge would work too, instead of the triboro. It gets you to the same place, but it’s a little trickier to find (Triboro is a major bridge, 3rd avenue is tiny).

Double check here for yourself to see where trucks are and aren’t allowed.

arseNal is right. Me, I like the Third Avenue Bridge, but it can be tricky to find. And worse, when you’re heading back out of Manhattan, you have to take another route if you’re in a commercial vehicle.

I recently rented a commercial van and drove across the Triboro Bridge. The toll is $4.00, I think. They asked me how much the truck weighed, and I had no idea. The guy at the toll let slip that they were making sure it didn’t weigh more than 7,000 pounds. The van was loaded with stuff, and they didn’t search me or anything, but if you’re going through a tollbooth, I’d recommend you make sure your car papers are in order.

Once you get into the City, Second and Third Avenues are very good for zipping right through, even if you’re in a large vehicle. But from the looks of your map, it seems you might want to get over to the West Side and head most of the way down Broadway, maybe hang a left at Times Square or 40th Street, then left again onto Sixth Avenue. The traffic there is hell, and you might have to go farther downtown, because some of the Midtown streets don’t let you turn onto them. I’m not sure if you’ll have this problem.

Good luck. When it comes to driving in Manhattan, my advice is: avoid it if at all possible, and make sure there’s beer wherever it is you’re finally going to stop driving for the day. But then, I’m from a small town in Pennsylvania, where they don’t drive like they do in this place; you might be better acclimated.

I recently moved some furniture and household stuff from Manhattan to Long Island and back via the Midtown tunnel in a Budget rental truck.

Each way there were lanes designated for trucks, and a small shoulder area marked off with traffic cones. When we approached, a police officer motioned us to park on the shoulder area. When we did, an officer asked for the keys to the back of the truck, and presumably opened it and looked inside. The officer returned the keys and sent us on our way with just a moment’s delay.

I would expect that the police stop all or most rental trucks at the major bridges and tunnels, though I don’t know whether they do at the Third Avenue Bridge. I don’t think that it will be a major problem if you are just hauling furniture and equipment.

I would not, however, recommend that you decide to take your nitrogen fertilizer and diesel fuel on a sightseeing tour of Manhattan.