De Blasio pushes up social distancing street closures to Saturday

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s social distancing street closures are coming two days early — just in time for the warm, sunny weekend.

The city will block vehicular traffic along 7.2 miles of streets beginning Saturday, to afford pedestrians and cyclists more space during the coronavirus pandemic.

De Blasio had previously announced that the streets would close beginning Monday.

“Thanks to quick work by the [transportation, parks and police departments], we’re going to open up the first 7 miles of streets for pedestrians and cyclists SATURDAY,” de Blasio tweeted Friday night.

“PLEASE practice social distancing and stay safe.”

The first batch of closures is part of a goal to open up 100 miles of roads to pedestrians and bikers before the end of the pandemic.

Each street to close Saturday is either within or adjacent to a park.

About 4.5 of the miles to close Saturday will be inside six city parks — Fort Tyron Park in Manhattan, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park and Forest Park in Queens, Callahan-Kelly Park in Brooklyn, Grant Park in The Bronx and Silver Lake Park on Staten Island — where roadways are currently open to cars.

The other 2.7 miles of open streets include: Williamsbridge Oval in The Bronx, Court Square Park in Queens, Carl Schurz Park, Highbridge Park and the Lt. William Tighe Triangle in Manhattan, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, and Stapleton Waterfront Park on Staten Island.

“On the open streets, the goal here is more space, more social distancing, but safe,” de Blasio told reporters during a conference call earlier Friday, adding that the endeavor “is going to be well-protected and well-regulated space and that’s part of why we have to do this in stages to get it right.”

New York City is expected to see its highest temperatures of the year this weekend, with highs around 69 Saturday and 75 Sunday.

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