SF car-free event Sunday Streets canceled through June amid coronavirus fears

San Francisco’s “Sunday Streets” program has been canceled through June amid coronavirus concerns.

The Sunday event, which is run by nonprofit Livable City, sees select city corridors go car-free on Sundays from spring through summer, with roads reclaimed by pedestrians, children’s activities and even music.

A recent city ban of events with more than 1,000 people — to help contain the spread of COVID-19, the coronavirus — led Livable City to reschedule its Sunday Streets events in March, April and May, which were planned for the Excelsior, Tenderloin and Bayview neighborhoods, respectively.

“This was a difficult decision to make,” Sunday Streets Director Katy Birnbaum said in a statement. “After a lot of consideration, we determined that this is the best way to ensure we have time to plan successful events and serve our most vulnerable communities.”

Mayor London Breed’s event ban is only in place for two weeks so far, but Sunday Streets, a public health program, relies heavily on the participation of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and San Francisco Department of Public Health to run, a Livable City spokesperson wrote in a press statement.

With SFMTA and DPH tied up addressing the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, the decision to postpone Sunday Streets was to ensure “stakeholder partnerships and involvement.”

“Today’s action is going to help us fight the new coronavirus together. The virus needs people to spread. It jumps from person to person, so by reducing the opportunity for that to happen, we can effectively slow the spread,” Dr. Grant Colfax, Director of Health, said in a statement about the event-ban.

Livable City will reprogram its 11 Sunday street events to take place between June and November 2020, a spokesperson said, and will release that schedule at the end of March.

joe@sfexaminer.com

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