Runners are taking over the road — so here’s how to avoid Miami Marathon traffic hell

On Sunday morning, while sane people slumber and dream, the runners will drag themselves from their comfortable beds.

They will gather in downtown Miami before the sun is up. They’ll run hard, and they’ll run far. And they will screw up traffic for anybody foolish enough to take to the roads of Miami, Miami Beach, Key Biscayne and Coconut Grove in the early morning hours.

The Fitbit Miami Marathon and Half Marathon kicks off at 6 a.m. Jan. 28, with 20,000 participants from 50 states and more than 80 countries. The course will take the runners from AmericanAirlines Arena in downtown Miami and east across the MacArthur Causeway. They’ll run up the beach on Ocean Drive, down Collins Avenue, then over to Washington Avenue, then back across the Venetian Causeway.

The next leg stretches down North Miami Avenue, where runners in the half marathon will peel off to the finish line at Bayfront Park. The full marathon runners will continue south to Coconut Grove. On the way back, they’ll take a short spur on the Rickenbacker Causeway, then head to the same finish line.

The last mile for both sets of runners has changed this year and will include a loop around the Miami-Dade County Courthouse.

Drivers: Consider yourself warned.

Runners can still sign up for either race through Jan. 28. Registration prices through Sunday are $150 for the marathon and $135 for the half. Register here.

All participants are expected to be completely off the of the course by 2 p.m. for the reopening of the roads. Most of the roadways will be clear before then, however, due to the rolling reopening procedures, meaning once the throngs pass, the roads are open for traffic.

Roads will be closed and managed by the city of Miami, Miami Beach and Miami Dade Police Departments. It is recommended that the Julia Tuttle Causeway be utilized for access to and from Miami Beach until 10 a.m.

Here are the roads that will be closed, according to the Miami Marathon:

  • Biscayne Blvd (Sat 1/27) Northbound from SE 3rd Street to NE 2nd Street, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Biscayne Blvd (Sun 1/28) Northbound from SE 3rd Street to NE 11th Terrace midnight-9 a.m.
  • SE 1st Street Eastbound from N. Miami Avenue to Biscayne Blvd, 2:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
  • MacArthur Causeway Eastbound from Biscayne Blvd to Alton Rd/5th Street 5-8:10 a.m.
  • Alton Rd/5th/South Pointe Drive NB/SB from 5th Street to South Point Drive, 5-8:25 a.m.
  • Ocean Drive NB/SB from South Point Drive to 15th Street, 5:55-8:25 a.m.
  • Washington Ave NB/SB from 7th Street to 17th Street, 6-8:50 a.m.
  • Pennsylvania Ave NB/SB from 7th Street to 8th Street 6:10-9:00 a.m.
  • 17th St Westbound from Washington Avenue to Dade Blvd 6:10-9:30 a.m.
  • Dade Blvd Westbound from West Ave Bridge to Venetian Causeway 6:10-10:00 a.m.
  • Venetian Causeway Westbound from Purdy Ave to NE 15th Street 6:10-10:00 a.m.
  • NE 1st Ave NB/SB from NE 15th Street to NE 17th Street 6:10-10:15 a.m.
  • N Miami Ave NB/SB from 17th Street to SE 1st Street 6:15-11:00 a.m.
  • S Miami Ave Southbound from SE 1st Street to SW 8th Street 6:30-10:30 a.m.
  • SW 1st Ave Southbound from SW 8th Street to SW 15th Rd 6:45-11 a.m.
  • S Bayshore Drive NB/SB from Aviation Ave to McFarlane Rd 7 a.m.-noon
  • Grand Ave Westbound from Mary Street to Commodore Plaza 7 a.m.- 12:15 p.m.
  • Rickenbacker Causeway EB/WB from S Miami Ave to W Powell Bridge 7 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
  • Brickell Ave Northbound from SW 26th Rd to SE 15th Rd 7:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
  • S Miami Ave Northbound from SE 15th Rd to SE 1 st Street 7:30 a.m.- 2 p.m.