Sunday, August 2, 2009

First Ciclovia in Downtown Roanoke Draws All Ages



Streets were blocked off in downtown while cyclists, skateboarders, rollerbladers and a few hula hoopers took over Jefferson Street. Young Tristan Sanson of Salem with his father Jesse and Aunt Kaitlyn DeForest were wrapping up the morning event. Tristan is pictured left with helmet in hand about to call it a day.

Ciclovia in Roanoke Saturday endeavored to make the limited blocked off streets people-centric rather than car-centric. The Roanoke Chapter of BikeWalk Virginia who organized the event succeeded in doing just that.

Inspired by Bogota Columbia’s Ciclovia and documented by Streetfilms where 70 miles of roadway are closed on Saturdays and Sundays in an effort to advance “livable streets.” Roanoke’s first ciclovia provided only a fraction of a mile. If Saturday was any indication of enthusiasm it could become a monthly or even weekly event. Adding more streets as participation grows and using all day Sunday when there is little downtown activity are other ideas.

Wikipedia defines ciclovia according to Wikipedia is a Spanish term, meaning either a permanently designated bicycle route or a temporary event closing of the street to automobiles to allow dominance by other users.

No the curly-coated retriever pictured below did not rollerblade or cycle his way around according to her owner Lisa. Seven year-old Lilly is a retired pet therapy dog and “always has to have something in her mouth – a rag doll or any item will do,” said Lisa. Saturday Lilly had her favorite stick pacifier and stared straight ahead like she was ready to “fetch” something else. She did break her concentration for a moment to play to the camera as pictured below.



Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Community, Local Events



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