NYC DOT Summer Streets 2022 will return for its 14th edition, extending the fun and free activities from Centre Street, Lafayette Street, and Park Avenue from the Brooklyn Bridge to East 109th Street in East Harlem! The nearly two-mile expansion of the Summer Streets program was announced by the Mayors office on July 21, 2022. Save the Dates, August 6th, 13, and 20th from 7:00am to 1:00pm.
“Our streets belong to all New Yorkers, and I’m so excited to be restoring the Summer Streets program to three full Saturdays and bringing it to East Harlem for the first time,” said Mayor Adams. “This is exactly what our public space is for: making fun activities accessible to hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers for free. I look forward to more people than ever taking advantage of this incredible opportunity to enjoy the best our city has to offer.”
“The Adams administration is committed to equity in everything we do, which is why we have already, this year, expanded the Open Streets program to so many new communities in all five boroughs,” said DOT Commissioner Rodriguez. “In that same spirit, we are bringing back Summer Streets this August to a record number of blocks, bringing car-free streets and exciting programming to East Harlem for the very first time. Whether you are an avid cyclist, jogger, or pedestrian, New Yorkers should get ready!”
There will be six rest stop with Summer Streets activities: Foley Square; Astor Place; Rose Hill; Midtown; Upper East Side and Uptown. Let’s take a look at what we might expect at each. Just a note ~ Unlimited Biking would like you to reserve in advance.
Since 2008, DOT has presented Summer Streets on nearly seven miles of streets, spanning from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park. This year’s program will, for the first time, extend all the way up to 109th Street in East Harlem, adding almost two miles to the traditional route. This iconic stretch will be made accessible to the public for free activities and outdoor recreation, including walking, running, cycling, and playing. Following on the successes of Open Restaurants and Open Streets programs – the latter of which was expanded to new neighborhoods this year – the city will activate the Summer Streets program for three Saturdays for the first time since 2019.
With so many fun and free activities, we’re making our list (and checking it twice). Here are a few suggestions ~ but be sure to check the entire list in advance.
We’ll start with a free bike rental from Unlimited Biking, picking up our bike on Lafayette Street. The bikes are equipped with baskets or bike bags, illustrated maps in case you need one, and a helmet.
Ride past Foley Square and the huge five-foot tall by fifteen-foot wide NYC logo by artist Ebony Bolt. You will find her design, entitled ‘Play, Run, Walk, Bike’ in three more places along the route.
On East 26th Street and Park Avenue, participants can pour water into a large display that will show the paths of raindrops falling on city asphalt and green space. In addition, we can learn about sustainable urban design and engineering projects presented by Naik Group.
On Park Avenue in Murray Hill, just a few blocks north of The Wizard of Park Avenue, be sure to stop by each of the whimsical creatures in the median between 34th and 38th Streets. This site-specific installation by French artist Idriss B was sponsored by Patrons of Park Avenue (POPA) and will be on view through February 23, 2023.
Rudin Plaza on Park Avenue between 51st and 52nd Streets is an Art and Culture Hub. The Art Students League, Glam Gardener NYC, and HONK NYC will be there on all three dates (Aug 6, 13, 20). Museum of Chinese in America and Urban Studio Unbound will be there on August 13th and 20th, Asia Society will be there on August 6th, Materials for the Arts on Aug 13th, and Green Inspired Art on August 20th.
Rudin Plaza will also have a full schedule of musical, theatrical and dance performances on all three dates from 8am to 12:45pm.
Continuing north, the Summer Streets route will pass by the historic Park Avenue Armory at 66th Street. Built by the National Guard’s Seventh Regiment in 1861, it is a current destination for live performances, concerts, art and antique shows, and a beautiful reflection of New York society in the Gilded Age.
Major fitness classes and events taking place on the Upper East Side at East 81st Street. Bring your yoga mat! Meditate, stretch, jump, kick and get your heart rate up at free fitness classes. In addition, Fit Club NY, a physical therapy and sports performance company with locations in Flatiron, Williamsburg and Astoria, will be on site at this location. Black Girls Do Bike will be offering bike tours along the Summer Streets route, stopping at a few black historical spaces. Free bike rentals by Unlimited Biking will also be located here.
Head Uptown to East 109th Street to the Art and Culture Hub, and northern end of Summer Streets.
Look for the Art Lives Here tent on all three weekends for Macrame with Wendy Gonzalez on August 6th. Gonzalez was recently part of the Buy Local East Harlem Summer Pop-Up Market at Church of the Heavenly Rest and East Harlem Nights at the historic LaMarquetta.
Artist Susan Stair and Curator Connie Lee taking a tree casting in Marcus Garvey Park for the installation Roots on FireTree Casting with Susan Stair on August 13th ~ Stair currently has an art installation entitled Ascending the Mountain on the steps leading up to the historic Harlem Fire Watchtower. She is also known for her large-scale outdoor art installation in Harlem Art Park, entitled Roots on Fire. as well as in-the-gallery exhibitions, including It’s Only Natural currently on view at Living With Art Salon.
Also in the Living with Art tent, Live Model Sketching with Arcadia Caraballo on August 20th ~ artist pictured above during an installation of her work for the exhibition ‘A Conversation Between Women‘.
Stay for a diverse array of musical, theatrical and dance performances from 9am to 12:45pm. And to top it off, the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus will perform on August 20th at 9am, 10:30am and Noon on East 109th Street between Park and Lexington Avenues.
Summer Streets is a project of the New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT). Follow Summer Streets on Twitter.
In addition, throughout August, DOT will host over 120 events throughout the city on the city’s Open Streets and plazas, along with daily Open Streets operations in all five boroughs. DOT has secured nearly $1.3 million in federal stimulus funding this year to support the Open Streets program, and the agency has been working closely with elected officials, community partners, and local residents to identify new and established locations where new Open Streets and plazas would have greatest impact.
We can’t close without posting these great images from our archives, when Summer Streets 2010 filled dumpsters with water for pop-up swimming.
Three dumpster pools were set up on Park Avenue between 40th and 41st Streets, along with changing cabanas and portable showers.