Tomorrow, April 27th New York City will go Car Free! We are excited to announce that tomorrow is the 4th Annual Car Free Day NYC. New Yorkers will have the opportunity to roam freely, taking advantage of the good weather while learning to be more environmentally friendly! Washington Heights will open St. Nicholas Avenue from 181st to 190th Street; Midtown will open Broadway between Union Square to 42nd Street.
There will be many activities for people of all ages to enjoy like performances, dance classes, puppet-shows, and much more can be expected. This year we have partnered with close to 100 unique organizations to make this year the biggest one to date! Citi Bike will provide free day passes at both the uptown and downtown locations as well as one location in Brooklyn. I hope to see you all tomorrow!
Car Free Day Programming
Uptown Car Free Day (10AM - 4PM):
- 181st to 182nd Street: Join City College STEM Institute's team to explore robotics and computer programming. Participants can also cross the open space to climb aboard a New York City FDNY truck. WellCare, TD Bank and other partners will have tables to welcome guests with free giveaways.
- 182nd and 183rd Street: Main stage, offering performances by local partners, such as Dance Project of Washington Height and Jazz Power, as well as acts such as Carnegie Hall and El Chaval.
- 183rd and 184th Street: Bike New York and DOT have partnered again this year for a Bike Bonanza, from 11:00AM to 2:30 PM. Bring an outgrown children's bike and you can upgrade for a current size. Once again, we will be providing free bike helmets to all participants.
- 184th and 185th Street: Try out a Citi Bike, learn your route to work with Uptown & Boogie Bike, or challenge yourself to an obstacle course provided by Asphalt Green and The Armory. Participants can also stop by the WellCare to get a free health screening.
- 185th and 186th Street: Sports all day! Participants can play volleyball with BAMESA USA, tennis with Washington Heights Tennis Association, football with the Van Courtland Titans or soccer with the Charles Street Soccer.
- 186th St and 187th Street: WeAct for Environmental Justice will be hosting a Swap, Shop, and Repair Fair from 12:00pm - 3:00pm. Bring your old clothes, dishware or toys and swap with neighbors. Attend one of their workshops to learn how to reuse and repair everyday items. You can also chat with many of our citywide agencies, Department of Environmental Protection. Mayor's office of Sustainability, Commission on Human Rights, or the Office of Emergency Management.
- West 187th Street: The Children will love the performance space! They can enjoy puppet shows by the Wildlife Conservation Society; Bronx Zoo, as well as Repartorio Español. Participants can also take dance or theater workshops with People's Theatre Project or DPWH.
- 187th St to 190th Street: More children's activities! Activities include face painting, balloon animals, and environmental design. Children can also make art projects with the mind-blowing Children's Museum of Art. Participants can pick up a free book from Literacy Inc and write a poem with Uptown Stories. At this site, you can learn to row with Row NY or explore sailing with Hudson River Community Sailing. To close it out, there will be amazing Zumba or yoga classes at 190th Street.
Broadway, from Union Square to Times Square from 9 am to 3 pm:
- Union Square features an intriguing pop-up streetscape intervention by the American Institute of Architects, American Society of Landscape Architects of New York, and the American Planning Association that will help New Yorkers visualize the future of Broadway, in which the street functions as social public space, privileging the pedestrian experience.Future Streets engages Car Free Earth Day participants in an immersive experience focused on public right-of-way design. The design features temporary potted plantings on Broadway's surface; an engagement booth with exhibition boards illustrating potential street designs and precedent images from around the world; places for musicians to entertain, as well as moveable tables and chairs open to the public, and grassy play areas. This rest stop also includes fitness classes all day provided by the NY Health and Racquet Club, and an historical walking tour of Union Square and Gramercy Park provided by Big Onion Walking Tours.
- At Flatiron, participants can find bike programming sponsored by Citi Bike. Willing participants can learn about Citi Bike and sign up for a membership. New and existing members are also eligible for a special gift. This site has a range of other environmental and sustainability focused programming from organizations such as: Earth Day Initiative, Earth Institute at Columbia and the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. The performance area features family fitness classes hosted by WRKNYC, PopFit Kids, Exhale Spa and Vibrate Higher, a dynamic musical performance by Fogo Azul NYC, and our signature Earth Day performance by the Artichoke Dance Company.
- At Worth Square, there is an abundance of fitness activities including free inline skate rentals provided by Go!Sports USA and family-oriented parkour activations from The Movement Creative. Big Onion Tours is providing an historical walking tour underscoring the importance of art, literature, and Rock & Roll.
- This year, the City Zone is a one stop shop for all educational, environmental and sustainability programming. City Agencies including DEP, DSNY, DOH, DCP, TLC, and the Parks Department are hosting information tents in the area. The Mayor's Office of Sustainability is also on site to encourage New Yorkers to think green and learn how to reduce their carbon footprint.
- Herald Square features various fitness classes including cardio, dance, boot camp and Iron Strength, provided by the 34th Street Partnership. Also, in collaboration with 511 NY Rideshare, Bike New York, and the 5 Borough Bicycle Club, participants can learn more about transportation advocacy and the proper bike check process. DOT Safety Education and Bike and Greenway divisions are also on site to provide participants with bike safety resources. Transportation Alternatives and DOT Transit Development team are showing New Yorkers other viable transportation options---whether by foot, bike, or mass transit.
- In the Garment District, there are spectacular musical performances by the Rockness Music and The Marching Cobras, a cultural Afro- Brazilian martial arts performance by the New York Capoeira Center, a dance performance by Ori Manea Tahitian Polynesian Dance, and lastly entertainment by the Bryant Park Jugglers.
- Also in the Garment District, participants can find some environmentally savvy public art by Willie Cole, titled 14000 Reasons, which message is to emphasize the significance of recycling while giving discarded items new life. This installation consists of two works of art, H20 TBR and Big Drink of Water, which both use plastic bottles to convey the artist's message. Other green inspired arts and crafts workshops are available by organizations such as Materials for the Arts and the Manhattan Graphics Center.
- The Times Square rest stop includes a fascinating walking tour provided by Big Onions Tours. With this being such a vibrant area, it has many layers of identity hidden and this tour will help participants learn about the ups and downs of Midtown--- its transformation from the center of the horse and carriage trade to present day as it stands as the heart of New York City. Stops may include: the former site of the American Horse Exchange, the Astor Hotel, the Paramount Building, the Lamb's Club, the former Aeolian Hall, and sites associated with Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Flo Zeigfeld, Mary Pickford, and many others.
- Also returning to Times Square this year is Project Dance's annual dance festival offering a variety of local and international dance artistry in ballet, jazz, modern, hip hop and tap from 10 AM to 6 PM.
Outer-Borough Car-Free Events:
- Car Free Earth Day Downtown Brooklyn: Albee Square West from Willoughby Street to Fulton Street and Albee Square Plaza, Brooklyn (11:00am - 3:00pm) Hosted by Downtown Brooklyn Partnership
- Songkran Weekend Walk: Woodside Ave from 75th Street to 77th Street, Queens (11:30am - 6:00pm) Hosted by Thai Community USA NYC
- Earth Day: Forsyth Street and Eldridge Street from Canal Street to East Broadway, Manhattan (9:00am - 3:00pm) Hosted by Chinatown District Management Association
- Castleton Avenue Street Festival: Castleton Avenue from Oakland Avenue to Davis Avenue, Staten Island (12:00pm - 6:00pm) Hosted by West Brighton Community LDC
- Circle the Square Earth Day: Lane Avenue from Westchester Avenue to East Tremont Avenue, The Bronx (12:00pm - 3:00pm) Hosted by Westchester Square BID