Motorists, be forewarned: This Sunday is a holiday for Atlanta’s pedestrian and cyclist community, and a huge stretch of popular roadways will be shuttered for a colossal celebration.
On Sunday, the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition is activating its longest Streets Alive route to date, spanning 10 miles from the Westside all the way to the City of Decatur.
The “slightly audacious and delightfully cohesive” Cross-City route will utilize the usually car-choked and dangerous DeKalb Avenue and Decatur Street, all the way up to Marietta Street and Howell Mill Road.
The kickoff parade convenes at the corner of Marietta Street and Howell Mill Road at 1:30 p.m., and the flood of pedestrians, cyclists, skateboarders, roller-bladers, and, surely, e-scooter riders will begin in earnest at 2 p.m.
From there, everyone but drivers will have total control of the 10-mile route until 8 p.m.
Of course, with the City of Decatur in the mix for the first time ever, this won’t be a one-way journey.
Decatur is hosting its own launch party at the corner of West Howard Avenue and North McDonough Street.
The most recent Streets Alive event, April’s Peachtree Street route, lured more than 120,000 participants.
2017’s Peachtree Street route drew the largest crowd to date, with about 134,000 people, but the cross-city route is poised to break the record.
And while the massive event is definitely all about fun and games, it also represents a roving rally for better transportation infrastructure.
Cramming more than 100,000 people on all sorts of alternative transportation options highlights how roadways could be shared in a safe and cohesive manner.
In September, Atlanta Streets Alive will activate a community-created route in Southwest Atlanta, where many streets on the city’s High-Injury Network are located.
A contrasting drone shot of #StreetsAlive that really shows what can be done with non-car focused public space (even just for an afternoon).— Luke Beard (@LukesBeard) April 7, 2019
I can really appreciate the effort it must take @downtownatlanta and @MidtownATL to get this kind of event through. pic.twitter.com/VMiCOO2ZC3