Every Sunday morning in Bogotá, 70 miles of city streets close to motorized traffic and open to the citizenry to walk, bike, dance, and engage with their city in an entirely new way. Called Ciclovia, this temporary re-appropriation of public space creates a festival of sorts that celebrates Bogotá and its people, who have flooded the streets weekly since 1976. Ciclovia has prompted the Open Streets Project, a movement that uses Bogotá as a model for similar programs in cities internationally, from Melbourne to Mexico City and Brussels to New York.
This summer, Ciclovia will come to Pittsburgh in the form of OpenStreetsPGH.
Having studied Ciclovia both as an urban studies major at the University of Pittsburgh and currently as a BikePGH intern, I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to finally experience it, especially without having to fly to South America.
During OpenStreetsPGH, on the last Sundays of May, June, and July, Pittsburghers will have free rein over 3.5 miles of streets from Downtown to Lawrenceville, granting them the space and opportunity to explore their city from a new perspective—from the middle of the street. Instead of being relegated to the sidewalks, people will be free—and encouraged—to reclaim the streets for themselves.
I’m really looking forward to the launch of Healthy Ride—Pittsburgh’s new bikeshare system—as well as the dancing and yoga and hula hooping, and especially the historical bike tour!! I’m also excited to see thousands of Pittsburghers realizing that streets are not just for cars and can be venues for fun and activity, not just traffic and road rage.
OpenStreetsPGH will prove to be a great opportunity to redefine the way Pittsburghers think about their streets. Presenting an alternative to the clogged, car-centric, and rage-inducing system we have now, it will show that people are more fun than cars, and that a bike- and pedestrian-oriented environment can prove more rewarding than a traffic corridor.
Visit OpenStreetsPGH.org to learn more about the May 31st, June 28th and July 26th events!
Not a member of BikePGH? Join today! We need you to add your voice! Bike Pittsburgh works to protect cyclist’s rights and promote the vision of making Pittsburgh a safer and more enjoyable place to live and to ride. For more info, check out: www.bikepgh.org/membership