By Samantha Chapnick
Take a New York City vacation in August to see exactly how cyclist friendly the city and New York hotels, streets, and shops have become. Janette Sadik-Khan (the city’s transportation commissioner) is determined to give local and visiting bikers a new, safer way to enjoy the best parts of our city from two non-polluting, non-garage-needing wheels.
Although there have been many steps taken in the past few years to make the city more bike friendly, this August offers the best chances to live the cycling life in NYC. Here are some things to put on your list.
1. August’s Summer Free streets program. The following streets are closed on select days in August to allow bikers to roam unencumbered by fear of cars.
- Park Avenue – 6.9 miles! Park Avenue from the Brooklyn Bridge to 72nd Street. Saturday, August 22 from 7 a.m. – 1 p.m.
- Stanton Street Summer Sundays – Stanton Street between Allen and Orchard Streets, August 23 and 30 and September 6 and 13, 1 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.
- Broadway, the avenue itself, on Times Square (from 41st to 47th Street) has recently been closed to car traffic. Although it is not really meant for bikers, with sun loungers and the bleachers at TDF, it’s a popular place for post-biking people to come to have lunch or relax.
2. The FREE Bike Rental program offered by the Downtown Alliance has proven so popular, it has been expanded this year. Thirty free bikes are available for pick up from Bike & Roll’s kiosk at the South Street Seaport (South Street and Fulton Street) and may be returned there, or based on availability, at the Bike and Roll kiosks on Governors Island, Pier A in Battery Park or 12th Avenue and 43rd Street. The 30 free bikes are available during each of the these three sessions, Monday through Sunday.
- 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
- 12:30 – 3 p.m.
- 3:30 – 6 p.m.
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Samantha Chapnick is a New York writer who scours international destinations looking for what hasn’t been found.