TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- Gov. Chris Christie has signed an executive order declaring a state of emergency ahead of Pope Francis' visit to the region next week to manage public safety concerns.

FILE - In this Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015 file photo, Pope Francis tries on a pair of spectacles in an eyeglass store in via del Babuino, in central Rome. (Daniel Soehne via AP, File)

The order signed Friday authorizes the use of the New Jersey National Guard if needed, and also gives officials the authority to change traffic flow on roadways.

Organizers estimate that more than 1 million people will come to the event in Philadelphia.

Among the major traffic and transit changes, the Ben Franklin Bridge will be closed between 10 p.m. Friday and noon Monday

Additional NJ Transit service will be provided for people going to and from the pope's visit to New York on Thursday and Friday.


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