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FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – It’s that time of year again when thousands of runners will take over the streets of Ft. Lauderdale for the state’s “largest office party.”

Thursday evening is Ft. Lauderdale’s 2015 Mercedes-Benz Corporate Run, a 5K, that goes through the streets of downtown Ft. Lauderdale.

The run, which is expected to have up to 8,000 runners and walkers, is open to employees of businesses, corporations, government agencies, financial institutions and non-profits – regardless of company size – and incorporates a special competition to award the overall men’s, women’s and co-ed teams in 20 different industries.

The course layout for the run will mean lots of street closures in the area around Huizenga Plaza. In preparation for the race, a section of Las Olas Boulevard has been closed since Wednesday. On Thursday, SE 1 Avenue from SE 2nd St to Las Olas Blvd was closed at 6 a.m.

More streets will be closed off as the day continues.

• 4 p.m.: Participants will start arriving – Traffic begins to increase
• 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Participants continue arriving. Street detours/lane closures along race route start (see course map here: http://mercedesbenzcorporaterun.com/ftl_roadclosures.php)
• 6:45 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.: Actual race time
• 9:30 p.m.: Roadways, with the exception of Las Olas, reopen
• 11 p.m.: East Las Olas reopens to traffic

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