New York has Times Square and Broadway in the warm months. Boston has Memorial Drive every Sunday.
And now, we Durhamites -- fresh from our dizzyingly cosmopolitan mentions in the New York Times (mentions, I tell you; twice in one week!) -- are getting ready to experiment with the idea of making some of our roads car-free.
This being the Sunbelt, though, where there's a Chevy Suburban in every distal neighborhood and where a few edge-case folks have (yes, I've heard this) been known to drive their car from the ATC South Deck for dinner to the ATC East Deck for a DPAC show, it's not for a summer... or a day a weekend... or a whole day.
But, hey, that's no reason not to get out and enjoy it. Every journey begins with one short step.
And so too will the newly-christened Bull City Summer Streets.
Set for Sunday, May 23, organizers including Clean Energy Durham, Triangle Transit, and Durham CAN among others have finagled the closure of a 1-mile path encompassing Durham Central Park and the historic Durham Athletic Park, from 2-6pm.
During that period, the roads in question will be open only to non-motorized traffic, the kind of folks who are typically worry-free only on those stretches of greenways that meander through the Bull City.
(Even that comes with exceptions. True story: my first time on a particular stretch of the American Tobacco Trail a few years back, I was surprised to hear the roar of a motorcycle behind me, though I guess it was more of a purr, given that the shiny metal bike was traveling at only perhaps 10 miles per hour.
I would have said something to the trail interloper -- but it's not every day you see a dude wearing a custom t-shirt featuring their own WANTED poster/arrest warrant. Seriously. Discretion, valor and all that.)
Anyway, assuming it's a good-weather weekend, it should be a grand time to enjoy the camaraderie of the great outdoors from a vantage point not seen every day: that of the centerline, without a few thousand pounds of steel surrounding you.
Ah, if only we could try this one out on Erwin Road.