Sunset Park, other Brooklyn nabes part of new Open Boulevards program

May 12, 2021 Jaime DeJesus
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The Sunset Park Business Improvement District (BID), along with other neighborhoods in Brooklyn, has been selected for a new program called Open Boulevards.

The program was announced by Mayor Bill de Blasio on May 12 and is a new program to enhance and expand 10 multi-block corridors to create dining destination experiences throughout the city. 

It will feature cultural activities, community-based programming, landscaping and other beautification, and art installations.

“In a year of dramatic changes to our urban landscape, Open Boulevards will transform New York City’s streets like never before,” said de Blasio. “The recovery for all of us will come to life on these streets, where small businesses, restaurants, artists, pedestrians and cyclists will gather to create the kind of destination you can only find in the greatest city in the world.”

David Estrada, executive director of the Sunset Park BID, told this paper he is happy the area is included in the program.

“Open Boulevards is setting an example for how you can coordinate advertising with NYC and Company, LinkNYC, kiosks, street banners and maybe bringing in art installations, furniture and give it an entertainment and creativity area. How do you add the human element and the creativity, expression and things that take it to the next level? That’s what Open Boulevards is.” 

The Department of Transportation called to ask about the possibility to bring it to Sunset Park.

“When I found out, I was just floored when Sunset Park was approached by the DOT who said, ‘Look, we find some ways for your appropriate ways for your particular set up to add an extra layer to make it not just a  beautiful event but a good example for other areas.”

For Sunset Park, Open Boulevards will take place at Fifth Avenue from 39th-41st streets, 45th-47th streets and 55th-59th streets.

Other areas in Brooklyn include: from Atlantic Avenue to Park Place; from Dean Street to Park Place; from Sterling Place to Berkeley Place; from President Street to Third Street; and from 10th Street to 13th Street.

The City will work with NYC & Company to promote Open Boulevards and drive citywide, regional, and international tourist activity to each location in the five boroughs. 

Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, is happy with the program, saying the Open Restaurants and outdoor dining programs saved several small businesses and jobs.

“(Open Restaurants) also inspired our communities and policymakers to reimagine our streetscape for complementary uses to create a more vibrant and livable city,” he said. 

“We commend Mayor de Blasio’s announcement of the new Open Boulevards initiative, which is a wonderful evolution of these programs that will weave outdoor dining with art, beautification, culture and community-based programming, to help foster a transformative recovery in our beloved city,” he added.

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