Time Flies:Time’s Up! Celebrates 25 Years
June 14, 2012
By Grace Lichenstein
It’s hard to believe, but it has been a quarter of a century since the environmental group Times Up! began campaigns that would call New Yorkers’ attention to perceived ills in transportation and air pollution.
It is perhaps best known for staging “traffic calming” bicycle rides, which began in 1993. Declaring that it wanted to “reclaim public space from automobiles, it started a series of rides in Central Park to promote shared road use with bicyclists, skaters and pedestrians. Its stated goal was car-free parks and bike-friendly city streets. The rides eventually spread to other boroughs and cities. .
These were followed by moonlight rides, memorial rides to honor pedestrians and cyclists killed in auto accidents and other events.
The group feels its work remains crucial. “While cycling in New York City is thriving right now and the current administration is extremely friendly that will probably not be the case in the future,” a Times Up! Spokesman told me today. “Even though cycling has risen from the grassroots of communities and fought for their sustainable place in this city, it seems ironic that cycling is only recognized as a success when it comes from corporations like Citibank advertising on the bike-share.
This weekend, Times Up! Is promoting rides to the Clearwater Festival in Croton on Hudson, New York, with its website listing guided rides listed and routes for those who prefer to pedal independently It will sponsor valet parking at the music and environmental awareness festival Saturday and Sunday.
The Times Up! 25th anniversary party takes place Tuesday July 3 starting at 8 p.m. at Brooklyn Brewery, 79 N.11th Street at Wythe in Williamsburg. It will feature beer on tap, (naturally!) plus video and photo installations, music from dance rides, Time’s Up! giveaways and memorabilia for sale.