For those interested in helping to shape our space and get involved with local development, Open Streets is right up your alley! This innovative initiative offers the perfect opportunity to connect with others who are working hard to improve our communities. The next Open Streets will take place on Sunday, 1 October and we’ve got all the information you’ll need.
The Open Streets concept was inspired by Ciclovía, a local programme from Bogota, Colombia. The idea behind it is to give people a chance to reclaim the streets of their community as a public space for walking, cycling, skating, playing, exploring and socialising. Ultimately, Open Streets wants to suspend reality and allow us to imagine a new “normal” for our roads. During Open Streets on 1st October, a 5km section of Cape Town’s M4 (this includes sections of Darling Street, Sir Lowry Road and Victoria Road) will be temporarily pedestrianised.
Previous Open Streets Days have taken place in Langa, Observatory, Mitchells Plain, Bellville and the CBD. However, in the past the route has been no longer than 2km and on 1st October Cape Town will experience the first ever ‘Open Streets Main Road’. It’s free for all and everyone is encouraged to participate and help plan the day.
The dream is to build a network of temporarily pedestrianised streets to help Cape Town residents and visitors connect with their city on a regular basis, and testing a longer stretch (5km) along the Main Road will hopefully provide momentum towards realising that dream. This short video should give you a good idea of what the day will be like.
Open Streets is a citizen-driven NPO, in partnership with the City of Cape Town’s Transport and Urban Development Authority, with the financial support from the WWF Nedbank Green Trust, Millennium Trust and Woolworths, as well as the help of many volunteers, residents and friends!
Woodstock Improvement District
As a large part of the WID area will be included in the route, our security officers will be present on the day to provide additional security, and connect with the people of Woodstock and Cape Town. From a business perspective, initiatives like Open Streets give businesses in Woodstock a chance to open up their doors to the public, and for the people a great chance to support these businesses. Open Streets also offers residents of Woodstock and surrounding areas an amazing chance to get a different perspective of our area by exploring the roads in other ways than just driving past them with a car.
Lastly, if you’ve been thinking of buying yourself a bicycle before summer, why not do it in time to use for Open Streets? A few of our favourite bicycle shops in the area that are worth checking out include Woodstock Cycle Works, Bicycle Express, Cycle Traders and Bike Lane. Most of these shops sell second-hand bikes or are involved in amazing projects!
If you’re part of any other community development programmes that we could support, please don’t hesitate to give us a call and let us know.