Itís A Walk In The Park & Bicycle Sundays
General Parks Information: (206) 684-4075 | TTY (206) 233-1509
Itís A Walk In The Park
Year-round, It's a Walk in the Park features roads permanently available
for pedestrians and bicyclists to enjoy without cars. They are open
every day of the week, in all seasons, at six sites across the city.
- Discovery Park, 3801 W Government Way - the Parade Ground and roads
off the north parking lot
- Volunteer Park, 1247 15th Ave. E - the western loop
below the reservoir
- Seward Park, 5902 Lake Washington Blvd. S - the lower loop around
- Magnuson Park, 7400 Sand Point Way NE - the Lakeshore Promenade
- Interlaken Park, 2451 Delmar Dr. E - between 19th and 21st Aves.
- Washington Park Arboretum, E Madison St. and Lake Washington
Blvd. - Arboretum Drive
Bicycle Sundays - May through
September along Lake Washington
Blvd from Mt. Baker Beach to Seward Park. For more information about dates and times, please
go to www.seattle.gov/parks/bicyclesunday/
An Expanded Opportunity for Your Health and Recreation
As part of our focus on supporting health in our communities and fighting
global warming by reducing car usage, we are expanding opportunities
for walking, bicycling, and other forms of human-driven motion. Streets
near these parks are also going car-free, linking recreational activities
to neighborhood business centers.
During road closures, people can enjoy the space in our larger parks
without cars. It's our hope that this will encourage people to use alternate
transport to get to these parks and will increase physical activity,
creating the opportunity for potentially significant health benefits
to many Seattleites. This program supports Parks and Recreation's Healthy
Parks, Healthy You initiative, with more information at www.seattle.gov/parks/healthyparks/.
Benefits for citizens and communities from "It's a Walk in
- Rising obesity rates in both children and adults, coupled with increasing
awareness of our direct impact on the climate and the environment,
mean that residents are seeking out safe, accessible, and affordable
ways to address these concerns. A car-free activity in a park provides
exactly this kind of opportunity.
- Because sections of these parks are uninterrupted by intersections,
closing streets to cars allows for the vigorous and sustained exercise
that people need to keep heart rates up and muscles moving for a long
enough time to be truly beneficial.
- Providing this opportunity on a simple, easy to understand schedule
will encourage people to engage in this kind of exercise regularly.
- It provides a healthy outdoor activity for families to do together,
and provides opportunities for neighbors to meet and socialize, as
formerly occurred with promenades in an earlier day.
- The program encourages people to use alternative forms of transportation,
expands their awareness of the impact of their actions, and reduces
the participants' collective carbon footprint.
A Growing Movement...
Regular "car-free days" are becoming increasingly common throughout
the nation and the world. According to the international World Carfree
Network, more than 1,500 cities worldwide now have regular car-free
days. Here are some examples:
- For years, Paris and other European cities have shut down streets
to cars on Sundays and public holidays throughout the year.
- In Florence and Siena, Italy, cars have not been allowed downtown
for many years.
- Since 2000, when citizens in Bogota, Columbia voted to approve an
annual Dia Sin Carro, Car Free Day, private cars have been banned
entirely from the city annually on February 1. There is now a weekly
Sunday Cyclovia program that dedicates 75 miles of roadway to pedestrians
- On November 14, 2007, legislation passed in San Francisco to make
permanent "Healthy Saturdays in Golden Gate Park," closing
the roadways to cars from April through September. A 2007 report commissioned
by Mayor Gavin Newsom found that on car-free Sundays on John F. Kennedy
Drive in Golden Gate Park, in place since the 1960s, twice as many
people visit the park with little impact on the surrounding neighborhoods.
Saturdays have been added. In 2008, San Francisco's Sunday Streets
opened six miles of waterfront streets to the public on two days at
the end of the summer.
- In Chicago, since 2002, the annual "Bike the Drive" clears
30 miles of Lake Shore Drive for a one-day bicycles-only event.
- In Phoenix, "Silent Sundays" at South Mountain Park and
Preserve ban autos from the road to the mountaintop once a month,
and the e-mail is running 80 percent in support of the program.
- Portland continues its Sunday Parkways on three dates at different
locations this summer.
- On three Saturdays in August last summer from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.,
New York City closed almost seven miles of streets in Manhattan from
the Brooklyn Bridge to midway up the length of Central Park. New York
City also regularly closes to traffic park roads in Central Park in
Manhattan, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, Silver Lake in Staten Island,
and three parks in Queens. There are also a number of shopping districts
that have car-free days throughout the city.
- Seattle and these other U.S. cities also operate successful temporary
road closure programs that attract thousands: Atlanta, Baltimore,
Boulder, Colorado Springs, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Indianapolis,
Madison, WI, Milwaukee, Nashville, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San
Antonio, and Washington, D.C.
Environmental Sustainability, Too
By encouraging people to recreate without cars and supporting their
efforts, "Its a Walk in the Park" will help you save money
on gas and reduce greenhouse gas output.
Learn more about car-free events and other programs that provide discounts
or incentives for driving less by visiting www.seattlecan.org.
Pedestrians and Bicyclists Sharing the Roadway
Even without cars, it is important that all who are using a road observe
common courtesy, know safety tips and be aware of their obligations
in using public space. To become more informed, you can go to these
To view a PDF, you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader. Download it for free at www.adobe.com.
May 8, 2012