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Mayor Announces “Open Streets Nashville” to Take Place Saturday, June 27 in Gulch

May 22, 2015

First Ever Festival to Celebrate Walking, Biking to be Held in Partnership with Walk/Bike Nashville

Open Streets Nashville LogoNASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Karl Dean invites Nashvillians to spend Saturday, June 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the city’s first-ever Open Streets Nashville festival, set to take place in the Gulch neighborhood. Open Streets Nashville is hosted by the Mayor’s Office in partnership with Walk/Bike Nashville. Mayor Dean announced the new initiative today during his finale walk as part of 100 Miles with the Mayor.

Open Streets festivals open stretches of city streets to people and close them to cars, encouraging participation in physical activity and healthy recreation. Open Streets Nashville expects to bring the Open Streets festival to many more of the city’s neighborhoods to promote a healthier city that is friendlier to walkers and bikers.

“With Open Streets Nashville, we invite everyone to experience the Gulch without any car traffic and enjoy this city street in a whole new way,” Mayor Dean said. “Through this event, we hope to encourage physical activity, promote street life, feature local businesses and highlight the environmental features of removing car traffic from a neighborhood when more people walk or bike.”

Open Streets Nashville will be a free event that is open to the public. Walkers, cyclists, families, musicians, dancers and community members from around Nashville are invited to attend and bring their bikes, strollers, skateboards, non-motorized scooters, hula hoops and dogs on leashes. Businesses will be invited to open their doors and expand into the street and sidewalk. Mini-stages, booths and tents will be erected along the route featuring games, music, food and fun activities. Metro Transit Authority will offer free bus rides from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. to anyone attending the festival.

The event will begin at 11 a.m. on 11th Avenue South under the Church Street Bridge with a ribbon-cutting celebration commemorating its transformation into a half-mile Complete Street. The 11th Avenue South Complete Street project added a short stretch of greenway and a mini-park under the Church Street viaduct. It features a multi-use path with dedicated bike lane and sidewalk, ample green space and six Cross Fit stations.

Following the ribbon cutting celebration, one mile of 11th Avenue South from Charlotte Avenue to Division Street and Division Street from 11th Avenue to Eighth Avenue will be closed to car traffic. It will only be open for attendees to walk, bike and enjoy event activities for the entirety of the festival.

For more information about the event as an attendee, sponsor or participating organization, visit www.openstreetsnashville.org.

During today’s 100 Miles with the Mayor walk, Mayor Dean led participants over downtown bridges and through LP Field. The walk capped of his successful 100 Miles with the Mayor campaign that had him walk, bike and paddle 100 miles across Davidson County to promote healthy living and highlight infrastructure investments made throughout Nashville in terms of new sidewalks, greenways, bikeways, community centers and other investments to encourage active living. Today’s partners included the Tennessee Titans and Music City Sports Festival. Presenting sponsor of the 100 Miles campaign was Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee.

“The 100 Miles with the Mayor campaign was about promoting healthy living by leading walks and bike rides on the sidewalks, greenways and bikeways we have invested in throughout Nashville,” Mayor Dean said. “We couldn’t have done it without the support of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee, and all the neighborhood groups and other organizations that came out to walk, bike and paddle with us.”

Open Streets Nashville builds on the success of other community-wide health campaigns hosted by Mayor Dean, including the Mayor’s Challenge 5K Walk/Run, Mayor’s Field Day and Walk 100 Miles with the Mayor.

About Open Streets Nashville

Open Streets Nashville encourages participation in physical activity and healthy recreation by opening streets to pedestrians and cyclists while closing them off to cars. Other Open Street festivals have taken place around the country with Los Angeles and New York implementing the first ongoing festivals. The first-ever Open Streets Nashville will be presented by Mayor Karl Dean and Walk/Bike Nashville in the Gulch on Saturday, June 27 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. For more information about Open Streets Nashville, visit www.openstreetsnashville.org.