Guest blog post by Rachel Holler, Executive Director of Bike Walk Macon
If you see Rachel Holler working in Downtown Macon, she is either on two feet or two wheels. The Executive Director of Bike Walk Macon is working to create a culture of multi-modal transportation in Macon where there is a viable – and safe – alternative to driving. Part of that is work is an annual “cooling” of the streets, where some of the busiest main veins in our city are temporarily shut down and opened back up as “paved parks.” The results have been a welcoming change – and the vibrant sense of place is evident.
“Open Streets Macon has seen tremendous support from both the city and the community,” said Rachel Hollar, Executive Director of Bike Walk Macon. “This second Open Streets program is an important step towards our vision of a truly expansive community-oriented program that promotes healthy living and active transportation improvements, accessible to everyone who lives in and around Macon.”
Here are more details about Bike Walk Month in this guest blog post by Rachel:
May is Macon Bike Walk Month. Neighbors, co-workers and friends across Macon will celebrate all month long by joining a variety of biking and walking activities hosted by Bike Walk Macon and other community partners. One of Macon Bike Walk Month’s featured events, Open Streets Macon, is bringing more than one thousand people to Macon’s largest public space — the streets!
Open Streets Macon returns Sunday, May 21, 2017 from 2-6 p.m. Maconites will be treated to 1.5 miles of car-free streets from the Washington Memorial Library to A. L. Miller Village. People traffic will replace car traffic, as sections of College St. and Montpelier Ave. become “paved parks,” where people of all ages, abilities, and social, economic and ethnic backgrounds can get active and connect with their community and each other. The new route will take participants through Mercer Village, adding food and beverage options to this year’s program.
Open Streets Macon is inspired by a world-class program proven to positively impact healthy behavior by repurposing existing public streets and providing access to free recreation space. Major global cities, including New York, Los Angeles, Paris, and Mexico City, have launched open streets programs in recent years. In 2016, more than 1,200 people attended the first-ever Open Streets Macon.
“As we work to become a more walkable, bikeable community, events like Open Streets Macon show people what can be possible…what can be done…to bring us into the 21st century of city living,” says Macon-Bibb Mayor Robert Reichert. “I am delighted to see the return of Open Streets Macon, and I know it will have just as much – and more – success connecting our community in a way that promotes healthy living.”
Open Streets Macon is organized by Bike Walk Macon and supported by Community Foundation of Central Georgia, Macon-Bibb County Parks and Beautification, Macon-Bibb County Urban Development Authority, Main Street Macon, and NewTown Macon.
Get out this month and get involved with Open Streets Macon or any of the Macon Bike Walk Month events by visiting www.bikewalkmacon.com/bikewalkmonth.