Summer Streets 2019. Photo credit: New York City Department of Transportation on Flickr
New York City’s annual “Summer Streets” program, which closes several miles of streets in Manhattan to cars, will expand to East Harlem this year for the first time ever. Mayor Eric Adams and Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez announced last week plans to extend the initiative by nearly two miles to East 109th Street. On three Saturdays in August, New Yorkers will be able to enjoy outdoor recreation, performances, fitness classes, and arts and crafts on more than eight miles of open streets spanning from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park.
“Our streets belong to all New Yorkers, and I’m so excited to be restoring the Summer Streets program to three full Saturdays and bringing it to East Harlem for the first time,” Adams said. “This is exactly what our public space is for: making fun activities accessible to hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers for free. I look forward to more people than ever taking advantage of this incredible opportunity to enjoy the best our city has to offer.”
Now in its 14th year, Summer Streets aims to promote fitness, fun, and culture. The program was halted in 2020 because of the coronavirus and brought back the following year for two days. This year, the program returns for a full three Saturdays for the first time since 2019.
The event will take place on August 6, 13, and 20 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., along Park Avenue, Lafayette Street, and Centre Street, up to East 109th Street. On the first day, Citi Bike will offer free day passes by using the code SUMMER22 in the app.
Along the car-free stretch will be six separate rest stops with different activities and giveaways at Foley Square, Astor Place, Rose Hill, Midtown, Upper East Side, and Uptown. From dance parties and rollerblade rentals to live performances and art projects, there are activities for everyone. Get the full list of programs here.
“The Adams administration is committed to equity in everything we do, which is why we have already, this year, expanded the Open Streets program to so many new communities in all five boroughs,” Rodriguez said.
“In that same spirit, we are bringing back Summer Streets this August to a record number of blocks, bringing car-free streets and exciting programming to East Harlem for the very first time. Whether you are an avid cyclist, jogger, or pedestrian, New Yorkers should get ready!”
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