Given the excitement that the city's Open Streets program has been met with, we aren't surprised about Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration's decision to kickoff a similar effort dubbed Open Boulevards. Designed in partnership with the Department of Transportation and NYC & Company, the project basically seeks to close off a number of streets, turning them into car-free roadways filled with outdoor dining options, cultural activities, community efforts and more. Think of it as an expanded Open Streets program on steroids.
A total of ten different "open boulevards" have already been selected across the five boroughs. In Manhattan, for example, both Amsterdam Avenue and Columbus Avenue will be car-free between West 106 Street and West 110th Street on Saturdays and Sundays from 11am to 8:30pm.
You can check out the program's official website right here for specifics, from selected dates to the times the program will be in effect, but here is a list of the streets that are going to be closed off on a rolling basis:
- Alexander Avenue, from Bruckner Boulevard to East 134th Street
- Arthur Avenue, from East 187th Street and Crescent Avenue
- Fifth Avenue in Park Slope, from Dean Street to Park Place, Sterling Place to Berkley Place, President Street to Third Street, and 10th Street to 13th Street.
- Fifth Avenue in Sunset Park, from 39th Street to 41st Street, 45th Street to 47th Street, and 55th Street to 59th Street.
- Vanderbilt Avenue, from Atlantic Avenue to Park Place
- Amsterdam Avenue, from 106th Street to 110th Street
- Columbus Avenue, from 106th Street to 110th Street
- Ditmars Boulevard, from 33rd Street to 36th Street
- Woodside Avenue, from 76th to 78th Street
- Minthorne Street, from Victory Boulevard to Bay Street
"This is going to be the kind of thing people are going to love because of all the life and vitality of New York City, all of the diversity, all of the energy, will be on display on these Open Boulevards," the mayor said during an official press conference about the news.
According to ABC, each selected roadway will be marked with "branded light pole banners and gateways at entrances and public table sand chairs." The restaurants that fall within the roped-off areas will also be given free barriers for security.
The update follows last week's City Council that turned the Open Streets program into a permanent fixture. The Mayor is expected to sign an official legislation concerning the matter today.
As the weather turns warmer, we expect a whole lot of New Yorkers to revel in these new outdoor-focused programs. The city is, indeed, coming back to life.