Atlanta Streets Alive returns to our traffic-laden city this Sunday, October 7, temporarily halting automobile transportation along North Highland and Virginia Avenues from 2p.m. to 6p.m. to create a car-free community space where participants can “take to the streets” - literally.
Driven by the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition (no pun intended), the event is designed to “encourage Atlanta to develop living streets — streets that appeal to pedestrians, bikers, businesses and neighbors.” While streets are publicly owned thoroughfares created for use by a variety of transportation means, they are, on a daily basis, overwhelmingly occupied by motor vehicles. On Sunday, people are invited to “reclaim” this 5-mile stretch (including two miles of the new Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail) and take advantage of the car-free environment to walk, bike, rollerblade, skateboard or participate in a slew of “human-powered” activities along the route including the physical: yoga, kickboxing, hula-hooping - and the cultural: a capella performances, marching bands, bicycle art displays.
Sunday marks Atlanta Streets Alive’s fifth event, the idea for which is credited to the city of Bogotá, Columbia where events centered around ciclovías (Spanish for “bike path”) have taken place since 1976. Today, certain main streets of Bogotá are blocked to traffic from 7a.m. to 2p.m. every Sunday, drawing over 800,000 people each week to run, walk, skate, cycle or partake in aerobics, yoga, and other various activities. Past Atlanta Streets Alive events have garnered an average of 3,400 attendees but this year’s goal is to attract at least 10,000 people to the streets, so come out this Sunday and show your support for creating safer, livable streets. More information (including an activity map) is available at http://www.atlantastreetsalive.com/.