[UPDATE: Read details from the mayor's press conference below] The entire MTA system will be shut down starting at 7 p.m. tonight because of FRANKENSTORM, and may not be back until Wednesday—so that means it's time for Mayor Bloomberg to come out and calm everyone down (and, ya know, probably call for evacuations). What kind of sweater will he wear? Will it be pink? Will it say "I Heart NYC?" Watch below and find out!
[Update]: Forgoing a comfort-inducing sweater for a stark grey zip-up, a slightly hoarse Bloomberg called for a mandatory evacuation of all New Yorkers in Zone A. "I've ordered this evacuation for the safety of approximately 375K people who live in these areas. If you life in these areas, you should leave them this afternoon," he said.
Public schools will be closed on Monday as well, and all street cleaning rules and alternate side parking has been suspended. In case you don't remember what you did last year during Hurricane Irene (here's the map of all the zones), Zone A includes Brooklyn's Coney Island and Manhattan Beach, Far Rockaway and Broad Channel in Queens, South Beach, Midland Beach, and other low-lying areas on Staten Island, and Manhattan's Battery Park City.
Bloomberg said Zone A residents who don't evacuate are being "selfish:" "If you don't evacuate, you're not just putting your own life in danger, you're also endangering lives of our first responders...[people who don't evacuate] are not going to get arrested, but they are being, I would argue, very selfish." He added that evacuations should happen by 7 p.m. tonight, when the MTA shuts down.
"Last night we said this was serious and dangerous storm, nothing has changed there," Bloomberg explained. "The surge will be a few feet more than what they predicted yesterday, around 6-11 feet. Gale force winds will start late this afternoon, growing overnight, and the worst of the storm will still be on Monday night. But tides overnight tonight will laad to coastal flooding in Zone A...We anticipate the surge will hit a lot of low lying areas, and the possibility of flooding will continue into Tuesday afternoon."
As for his imploring city workers to come to work on Monday, he said: "We need the city workers. They're here to serve the public, thats' the job they have...We all take great pride in serving the public. it may be inconveniant, but hopefully not dangerous." Bloomberg concluded the presser: "Just go visit somebody who is happy to have you."