TRENTON - Gov. Chris Christie held a briefing on Hurricane Irene this afternoon in Ewing.

Gov. Christie announced about half of the Garden State Parkway will be closed to traffic Friday because of Hurricane Irene.

Gov. Chris Christie says the parkway's southbound lanes will be closed to traffic at Exit 98 in Wall Township beginning at 8 p.m. Traffic will be routed at that exit to Interstate 195 west.

Christie says there's no reason to allow motorists to travel beyond that point.

Christie urged people to evacuate the barrier islands in Atlantic, Cape May and ocean counties sooner rather than later to prevent traffic tie-ups.

New Jersey Transit trains will stop running at noon Saturday ahead of the storm.

Earlier it was announced that eastbound lanes into Long Beach Island will close to traffic at 6 p.m. After that point, all lanes on Route 72 will funnel traffic west for 28 miles to Route 70.

Christie has urged people to evacuate the barrier islands in Atlantic, Cape May and Ocean counties.