Houston has continued its attempt to innovate in the area of urban living. Begun last year, the city hosted the final Sunday Streets of the season this past week on May 17. The route ran along Navigation in Houston’s East End. Prior Sunday Streets have been in Houston’s Montrose and Heights neighborhoods. For each Sunday Streets, the streets are shut down for four hours for pedestrians and cyclists.
This spring the city collaborated with Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company on the Sunday Streets initiative. The event began with the Mayors concern with the long term health risk that comes with obesity. In 2012, 47% of Harris County children were classified as overweight or obese. Childhood health risks include joint issues, early heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, several types of cancer, and osteoarthritis. Evidence shows that regular physical activity, such as walking, is an effective treatment for these conditions. Although Houston is not traditionally a walkable city, by getting people walking, the city is encouraging healthy habits.
But in addition to the health goals, however, the Sunday Streets program, which was modeled on Columbia’s Cyclovia initiative has been aimed to expose citizens to businesses and local entrepreneurs that people would not be exposed to otherwise. Mayor Annise Parker wanted citizens to explore the City and learn more about Houston. Sunday Streets is a safe platform for reaching these goals. Without the usual threat of car activity, citizens are free to enjoy cycling, walking, dancing, socializing, and a family-friendly avenue to be physically active while exploring the many things that Houston has to offer.
With the event’s success since 2014 and thousands of participating citizens, the City of Houston is committed to making Sunday Streets a permanent event in Houston. The City has announced that there will be future Sunday Streets even though the dates have not been posted.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a pedestrian or cycling accident, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.