In order to get more people our riding bikes, it’s important that they feel comfortable when on the roads. Whether that means creating more dedicated bike lanes, offering additional bike locking stations, or hosting bike-friendly events, there are plenty of ways that we can contribute to a more bikeable Buffalo.
Every so often, Buffalo’s biggest bike advocates – GObike Buffalo – host “open street” events, where the public is invited to partake in a sort of “Cycling Fiesta.”
On Saturday, July 10, from 11 am to 3 pm, fans of grassroots placemaking and urbanism initiatives are invited to attend an “open street” event on Grant Street, with activities centered on the south end of the street.
- Bike rides
- Live music
- e-bike and crosswalk painting demonstrations
- Mobile bike repair
- Small business sales and expos
“This is a wonderful event for cyclists of all ages to get together and enjoy a beautiful summer day in Buffalo, and a perfect opportunity to patronize some of the great businesses on Grant Street,” said NY State Senator Sean Ryan. “My thanks to GObike Buffalo for their important work in the community.”
During the event, a section of Grant Street will be activated, to create an educational and interactive environment for people on foot, bike, skateboard, etc. The purpose behind the activities is to encourage healthy activity, foster community connections, and support local businesses.
Typically, these “open street” events see the closing of streets to automobile traffic, but due to the pandemic “Grant Street will remain open during this event to discourage large crowds.”
“The ‘Open Streets Bflo’ event represents the culmination of GObike’s summer efforts to promote bike-abilty and a new cycle-friendly environment in the city of Buffalo,” said Assemblymember Jon D. Rivera. “Through three unique ‘Slow Roll’ rides, this event will highlight our city’s progress as its neighborhoods begin to cultivate distinctive features integral to communal living, and will also give our community’s small businesses a much-needed boost in the aftermath of a pandemic that had a devastating effect on entrepreneurship.”
If Grant Street is ever going to live up to its goal of becoming a true “International Market,” then it has to undergo numerous positive changes. Whether that’s building mixed-use infill, fixing up facades, better retail signage, or picking up litter, there’s a lot to be done. Thankfully, a number of advancements are already underway, including a Grant Street streetscape study by GObike, and the community preservation planning process by Preservation Buffalo Niagara.
“Grant Street has always been such an important part of the Niagara District. I look forward each year to events that bring together district and non-district residents alike to enjoy Grant Street and all it has to offer,” said Niagara Councilmember David Rivera.
“Through the Open Streets event, GObike hopes to demonstrate the benefits of a healthy Grant Street–one that supports individual and community health, as well as economic and cultural health,” said Thea Hassan, GObike’s project manager for the Grant Street streetscape study. “Through the streetscape study, we hope to see these changes made permanent.”
“We’re excited to connect our community with all the excitement around Grant Street, from the daily buzz of businesses to the bright future of a more equitable street design,” said Slow Roll Buffalo cofounder Seamus Gallivan. “Our three short rides for Open Streets on Grant will show how critical Grant Street is in connecting the entire West Side.”
Open Streets is presented by Independent Health in partnership with Slow Roll Buffalo.
Activities will start at 11 am at Grant Street and Lafayette Avenue.
Slow Roll Buffalo rides will lead at the following time and locations:
• 12 pm from Freddy J’s BBQ (195 Grant Street)
• 1 pm from West Side Bazaar (25 Grant Street)
• 2 pm from Gypsy Parlor (376 Grant Street)
Additional activities include e-bike demos with Shared Mobility, Inc., mobile bike repair from GObike, FREE giveaways from presenting sponsor, Independent Health, crosswalk painting demonstration, live music, and informational sessions by West Side Business and Taxpayers Association and Entrepreneurship for All. In addition, businesses in the Grant Street Marketplace will host sidewalks sales and expos, including free hot dogs from Lorigos Meating Place, 10% off at Gather & Game, herbs from Stephanie Adams Law Firm, and much more.
An event map can be found here.
RSVP to the Facebook event here.