DOT to celebrate Open Streets: Car-Free Earth Day with events throughout the city

Students and parents enjoying car-free streets
Courtesy of Open Plans and Transportation Alternatives.

The city is kicking off its Open Streets program with a fun-filled, car-free Earth Day celebration later this month.

On April 3, city officials and community partners and advocates joined together in Times Square to announce the largest-ever celebration of Open Streets: Car-Free Earth Day. Hosted annually by the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), the day promotes activism and education surrounding climate change, sustainability, and more sustainable modes of transportation. 

“Open Streets: Car-Free Earth Day is about encouraging New Yorkers to leave their vehicles at home and enjoying our city’s parks, plazas, and expanded network of Open Streets,” said DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez. “This celebration offers an opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy activities at dozens of locations in communities around New York City. It also serves as a reminder that we only have one planet — and we must all do our part to reduce our carbon footprint and pay homage to the one beautiful planet we have.” 

This year’s celebration will take place on April 22 and will include seven signature events and 23 community-produced events which will include performances, fitness training, giveaways, and educational activities.  Some of the signature events for the event will take place on the following streets:

  • Manhattan
    • Dyckman Street, from Broadway to La Marina
    • St. Nicholas Avenue, from 181st Street to 190th Street
    • Broadway, from East 17th Street to West 42nd Street 
  • Brooklyn
    • Troutman Street, from St. Nicholas Avenue to Irving Avenue 
  • Queens
    • Woodside Avenue, from 76th Street to 79th Street
  • The Bronx
    • Willis Avenue & Roberto Clemente Plaza, from 147th Street to 148th Street
  • Staten Island
    • Minthorne Street, from Bay Street to Victory Boulevard

Additionally, through the support of Lyft, Citi Bike will offer unlimited 30-minute rides on a classic Citi Bike for 24 hours with the promo code CARFREE23 on the Citi Bike app on Car-Free Earth Day.

Open Streets: Car-Free Earth Day was first launched in 2016 by converting select Manhattan streets into public plazas and car-free streets for pedestrians, cyclists, and local businesses. The event has since grown to include 30 locations throughout the city, connecting over 80 open streets, plazas, and accessing over 1,000 miles of New York City’s bike network.  

“Car-free day has quickly become a valued New York City tradition, and we are proud to participate and support efforts to reduce emissions,” said NYC DCAS Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock. “We applaud the work our colleagues at the Department of Transportation are doing to make our streets safer and our environment more sustainable, and look forward to continued partnership.”  

“Over 5 million customers ride on MTA public transit every day across the metropolitan area — a climate-friendly network that is responsible for reducing the region’s greenhouse gas emissions by 17 million metric tons,” said MTA Acting Chief Customer Officer Shanifah Rieara. “We look forward to supporting Car Free Earth Day and reminding New Yorkers that mass transit isn’t just the fastest and easiest way to get around, it’s also the greenest.” 

To find more Open Street locations as well as more information about the community-organized locations, visit nyc.gov/carfreenyc.