NYC Open Streets becoming permanent, Open Boulevards launching

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- New York City's Open Streets will become a standard part of city life Thursday when Mayor Bill de Blasio signs legislation making the program permanent.

Open Streets started in Spring 2020. NYC was the epicenter of the pandemic, and the city opened up 100 of NYC's 6,000 miles of streets for exclusively for pedestrians.

The idea was to create more space for people to walk around while maintaining social distancing, which was proving to be a challenge on tight sidewalks.

The program has since expanded to include more blocks across the city.

ALSO READ | 1st NYC street performances part of 'Open Culture' program
EMBED More News Videos

An all-women drumming group performed in Long Island City.



And now, de Blasio announced Wednesday, the program is expanding again.

Open Boulevards will feature multiple blocks in a row blocked off to vehicles and filled with restaurants, performances and other activities.

The new program will start with ten boulevards opening on a rolling basis across all five boroughs.

"In a year of dramatic changes to our urban landscape, Open Boulevards will transform New York City's streets like never before," said de Blasio.



The city will work with NYC & Company to promote Open Boulevards and drive citywide, regional, and international tourist activity to each location in the five boroughs.

The announcements continue Streets Week!, a suite of transportation, traffic safety, and open space policy announcements to double down on the transformative Vision Zero initiative.

In addition, the city plans to mark Open Boulevards with branded light pole banners and gateways at entrances and public tables and chairs.

Restaurants on Open Boulevards will receive free barriers at select giveaway events, to ensure safety for roadway diners and pedestrians.

Here is a list of the first ten Open Boulevards scheduled to open:

Bronx
*Alexander Avenue (Bruckner Blvd - East 134th St)
*Arthur Avenue (East 187th St - Crescent Ave)

Brooklyn

*5th Avenue in Park Slope (various)
*5th Avenue in Sunset Park (various)

Manhattan
*Amsterdam Avenue (106th St - 110th St)
*Columbus Avenue (106th St - 110th St)

Queens
*Ditmars Blvd (33rd St - 36th St)
*Woodside Ave (76th St - 78th St)

Staten Island
*Minthrone Street (Victory Blvd - Bay St)

ALSO READ | Exclusive: Mom of toddler struck by suitcase now in fear of growing violence in NYC
EMBED More News Videos

CeFaan Kim talks to the child's mother about the incident



national geographic covid newsletter sign up



MORE CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 COVERAGE




New York City COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker
New Jersey COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker
How to get the vaccine in NYC, Tri-State area
Do you have coronavirus symptoms?
WATCH: Eyewitness to a Pandemic
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on coronavirus



Submit a News Tip or Question
Copyright © 2021 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.