Last year, we hosted a public hearing to discuss the possibilityof a program run by the Department of Transportation called SummerStreets. The program would allow for a portion of Third Avenue tobe closed to traffic on Friday evenings during the summer, allowingrestaurants and shops to bring their food and merchandiseoutside.This program would keep cross street traffic open, and only localbusinesses with storefronts in the neighborhood would be eligibleto participate. Along with our local cultural groups, this eventwould show off the very best of Bay Ridge to the rest of theborough and beyond. This year, we are hoping to make SummerStreets a reality.Keep in mind, this is not another Third Avenue festival. Theorganizers are not inviting any outside vendors and there won’t beany loud music or shopping carts full of balloons.Instead, imagine strolling the Piazza San Marco in Venice a fewhours before sunset. The organizers are planning a relaxed,family-friendly atmosphere to celebrate the diverse cultures,stores, restaurants and strong community spirit that make Bay Ridgeso unique. And that sounds good to us!Recognizing Bay Ridge as a creative and culturally vibrantneighborhood means more visitors, a stronger local economy andgreater investment in local businesses and the quality of liferesidents have come to expect.For too long, Bay Ridge’s incredible arts and culture organizationshave enriched our own neighborhood but been largely overlooked bythe rest of the borough and city. This event will showcase ourlocal arts and culture groups and programs and help get them therecognition and appreciation they deserve!On February 7, there will be a public hearing hosted by CommunityBoard 10. We believe this event will be a hit, but we want to hearfrom all of you because your input is absolutely vital. Together,as a community, we can ensure that this program will be a success,and that everyone who calls Bay Ridge home will benefit from thisextraordinary Summer Stroll.
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