Open Streets event in New York City, Summer 2013
Note: I'm still riding a fixie and am still alive - but that's not why I'm posting today. Don't forget: if you have a fixed gear bike and know why you ride it (that may be a tall order, I know) Tweet the answer on Twitter with the hashtag #WhyAFixie
Viva CalleSJ is a week from today - and if you don’t know what that is I am pleased to report that not all of the knowledge I brought with me when I moved to San Jose from Connecticut a few months back is completely useless.
Viva CalleSJ is an open streets event, which means city streets (six miles of them, in this case) are closed to cars for a period of time and people can walk, bike, do yoga, juggle and just…what’s that word…play.
A couple of years ago my wife and I went to one in Manhattan and it was just. Period. Plain. Period. Fun. Period. Just getting out of Grand Central Terminal and not being greeted by a swarm of angry motorists was striking. Laughter instead of car horns. Relaxing instead of rushing. Just beautiful.
Walking down a New York street we've driven or taken a taxi on scores of times before made us think differently about a city and really, for the first time, experience it on our own terms. That’s just one part of what an open street event can do (if you think it has echoes of other ideas that involve reimagining public space like Parking Day you’re right).
New York City. San Jose will soon find out just how fun and exciting six miles of city streets can be when cars are kept away.
So for those of you who - justifiably so - do not bike on city streets because you think they are dangerous please reconsider for Viva CalleSJ: Inherently, streets are not dangerous - motor vehicles are.
And they aren’t invited.
And if you don’t have a bike you should absolutely go get one at Good Karma Bikes which is located (for the next several weeks, anyway) at 345 Sunol St. in San Jose. It’s open today from 11:00 - 3:00pm. If you already have a bike but need a part, GKB will help you there as well. Have fun today and especially have fun at Viva CalleSJ a week from today. Thanks for reading and thanks for riding.