What Do We Mean When we Say Car(e) Free?
Open Streets 704 powered by BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina isn’t anti-car, it’s pro-people! It’s not about keeping cars off the streets for a couple of hours one Sunday afternoon, it’s about letting people experience a new way to relate with each other and their surroundings, and realizing there’s not that much distance between them. Open Streets 704 is about breaking down barriers and gaining a new perspective on what a vibrant, healthy, connected community looks like. And to have a good time doing it!
So, what would you do in a car-free environment? Would you head to the park? Commute to work or school? Take a walk with your family, your best friend or your dog? Maybe you’d stop at that little shop on the corner you pass on your drive to work, or strike up a game of four-square in the middle of the blacktop, just because you could. The options are endless, and limited only by your imagination – and the law, of course. Open Streets are for everyone!
This Way to Car(e) Free ______________.
How would YOU fill in the blank? Some our favorites include:
Better Health: There’s no disputing the connection between physical activity and better health. Open streets events encourage activity, with streets open to walking, biking, skateboarding, strolling, wheelchairs, and the like! You won’t even call it “exercise!”
Connectivity: Open streets allow us to realize just how close “across town” or even across the street really can be. Removing the physical barrier that busy streets and traffic create opens us up to the idea that boundaries can be fluid and that neighborhoods are the fabric that weave our larger community.
Cleaner Environment: The action of keeping your car parked for open streets goes beyond just day of the event. One of the core concepts of open streets is to encourage the idea that you CAN get around town outside of your car! Understanding public transportation options, or even seeing cycling and walking as legitimate means of getting there and back.
Better Business: Not every open streets route passes through a business district, but those that do put an entirely new spin on “foot traffic”. Opening the streets to pedestrians and non-motorized traffic gives us a chance to slow down and check out artists, eateries, shops and other businesses we may not ordinarily have the chance to interact with.
Fun! Wouldn’t it be great to get all the health, social, and financial gains of Open Streets in a safe, worry-free environment? The Open Streets 704 route will have opportunities for us all to engage with neighbors, friends and local businesses, without the hassle of traffic and parking. We’ll have zones for arts and crafts, healthy activities, stuff just for families and more!