Your Livable Streets Weekend: From Sands Street to Summer Streets

Unless my Mac dashboard weather widget is deceiving me (and it’s been known to), tomorrow should be a gorgeous day for the debut of Summer Streets 2009. Here’s a look back at last year’s fun, care of Streetfilms, to whet your appetite.

Earlier today, Lily Bernheimer posted a nice rundown of related goings-on tomorrow in the Livable Streets Community. And if you can make it, start the weekend off right this evening with a ride on the city’s newest cycling amenity, the Sands Street separated bike lane.


  • doo

    I hope you early-birds out there had fun. They really should make this thing later. Surely I’m not the only one who takes several hours to get going most Saturdays.

  • Marty

    Same here! I was very disappointed that given the success of last year’s event, that they didn’t extend this one, geographically or timewise. My kids had commitments at 11, so the event was basically shot for us unless we wanted to give up a good night’s sleep. Even then it would have been hard to get there on bikes from Brooklyn without street closings on our side of the bridge.

    I managed to make it up to 28th street before I had to turn around at 12:30 to pick up my kid from a birthday party. The event was packed, seemed to be in full swing, yet was half an hour from having the plug pulled on it.

    Had it been a full-day event we would have arrived as a family after the kids’ activities were done and probably would have invited a relative from Long Island to join us.

    It was beautiful to see and I give DOT credit. But the election-year timidity is a bit ridiculous given how popular this is.

  • MrManhattan

    Same here,

    I managed to get out by 11, and was able to do one loop of the whole route (BB to 72nd, not through the Park) before they started taking down the cones. Considering the great popular response (packed along most of the route from 11 to 12:45), how infrequently this happens, and all the effort that goes into setting it up, going till at least 5pm makes more sense.

  • Marty Barfowitz

    Here’s how it was explained to me:

    As is often the case with livable streets issues these days, the NYPD is the problem when it comes to expanding Summer Streets. The cops have inserted themselves into Summer Streets in such a way that it takes a whole bunch of them — and a whole bunch of overtime pay — to run the event. The cops have, essentially, made it too expensive for DOT to expand the Summer Streets route or the hours of the event. And did you notice what the police were doing out there today? Pretty much nothing. They were standing around in clumps at intersections collecting their overtime pay. There’s absolutely no need for the oversize police presence at Summer Streets.

    I’ve heard that in Bogota, their Ciclovia event — which takes place every Sunday over hundreds of kilometers of streets — is mostly officiated by young people doing their national service requirement.

    Personally, I’d be very happy to volunteer for NYC DOT Corps and direct traffic at one intersection for one Summer Streets event once a year.

  • James

    Marty Barfowitz said “Personally, I’d be very happy to volunteer for NYC DOT Corps and direct traffic at one intersection for one Summer Streets event once a year.”

    I’m sure they still need volunteers to help direct traffic, here’s the link where you can sign up to help.

  • Summer Street Need to Last Longer! From 11am to 1pm the Streets came alive, that festival atmosphere just pops and you don’t want it to end! Too much overtime for the Police? Get more volunteers! This is the Best Event I’ve seen for the City Ever!!

  • cr

    Also, what’s with the army of street cleaners (both motorized and on foot) that descended on the route afterwards? It’s not a parade where people are dropping garbage and leaflets all over the place… Seems really wasteful and useless…


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