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Car-Free Streets

VIDEO: Open Streets Are Letting Kids Be Kids Again

12:01 AM EDT on May 17, 2020

Look at that kid! He’s having fun!

The play date.

Say it to yourself a few times. "Play date." Is there anything more depressing than the thought of having to arrange the leisure time of your child — and then transport said offspring to another person's house at a set time?

A "date" to play? It's absurd; play is your kid's job, not yours.

Fortunately, there's a solution: open streets.

Slowly, across the entire city, people are seeing how much easier — how much better — it all is when cars are banished from neighborhood streets and kids can just ... play.

On their own.

Whenever they want.

However they want.

Even in pajamas.

Without us being anxious (which only makes them anxious).

And forget even about playtime — consider basic safety: Car drivers killed at least six kids, 10-years-old or younger, last year. This isn't only about recreation. It's about basic safety and freedom of movement on roads dominated by cars.

As Mayor de Blasio's open streets program expands (current full list here), we are already seeing its potential (especially if he can be encouraged to make it permanent). So watch some video clips that we shot over the last few days, with music provided by our in-house satire band, The Speeders, riffing on The Beach Boys' classic, "Fun, Fun, Fun."

It's the latest song parody from a band whose instant classics include hot takes on:

beach boys speeders cover
So sing along with The Speeders. (and The Beach Boys):
Well the streets are free of cars
So our kids are having so much more fun now
They don’t have to be scared
'Cause they won’t risk getting killed or run down now
So with the danger reduced
They can skip and jump and laugh all around now
And they'll have fun fun fun
'Til the mayor gives the streets back to cars.
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
Well the mayor took his time
'Cause he don’t like to make drivers annoyed now
(Make drivers annoyed now make drivers annoyed)
But kids are loving life now that open streets have been deployed now
(Streets are deployed now, streets are deployed)
City kids are smiling
'Cause this summer they might even enjoy now
(Might even enjoy now, might even enjoy)
And they'll have fun fun fun
'Til the mayor gives the streets back to cars.
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
Well we knew all along
That cars are the worst thing for kids now
(Cars are the worst, man, cars are the worst)
But now that streets are open
People see streets of cars should be rid now
(Cars should be rid now, cars should be rid)
But you gotta watch this mayor
So these open streets won’t be undid now
(Won't be undid now, won't be undid)
'Cause we'll have fun fun fun
'Til the mayor gives the streets back to cars.
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
And we'll have fun fun fun
'Til the mayor gives the streets back to cars.
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
(Wo wo wo wo woo woo woo)
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)
(Fun fun fun til the mayor gives the streets back to cars)

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