Perhaps it started in 1899 when cars were first allowed into Central Park. What a great spot that must’ve been for showing off your new internal combustion motor wagon. Ten years later things really got rolling. In 1909, the big, broad sidewalks on 5th Avenue were cut by 15 feet to accommodate more car traffic. More cars and fewer pedestrians seemed like a progressive idea — once.

That “traffic” continued to grow unabated in New York. But in 1973 a group of advocates got together and formed Transportation Alternatives. Their mission was clear:

Reclaim New York City’s streets from the automobile, and advocate for bicycling, walking and public transit as the best transportation alternatives.
Transportation Alternatives NYC

Now, 40 years later @TransAlt is a hard-working advocacy organization with over 100,000 active supporters. Last Thursday night was their birthday. We pedaled our CitiBike to the party, ate cake and drank beer from Brooklyn Brewery.

Trans Alt Paul Steely White Belle Helmets
There was a silent auction with all sorts of terrific contributions from area restaurants and merchants. These folks understand the value of common spaces where neighbors come together to shop, eat, walk their dogs and ride their bikes.

Of course the auction had cool bikes and equipment like hand-painted headgear from Belle Helmets. There was an Cleverhood Electric Houndstooth rain cape too. We’re “big” supporters of Trans Alt and similar efforts gaining steam in cities all over the world. DJ Martin was the winner. He seemed genuinely happy with his prize.
DJ with TA's Samantha Dodds

DJ didn’t realize the Electric Houndstooth had special reflective properties. I think we blew his mind.

DJ and TA's Samantha Dodds

Electric Houndstooth: FLASH