Cycling in New York: Central Park, a sanctuary in a crazy urban powerhouse

Cycling in New York: Central Park, a sanctuary in a crazy urban powerhouse

by Dinika Govender

In the middle of a seemingly endless traffic gridlock between cabs, cars and commuters throughout New York City, Central Park offers its own car-free cacophony.  These are just a few of the scenes observed during an afternoon spent wandering in the Park in the summer of 2011.

Cyclists, roller-bladers and runners get off New York’s grid for uninterrupted laps around the park’s own inner roads- whilst baseball games, picnics and wedding rehearsals occupy the grassy banks. For a nostalgic, old-Hollywood affair, horse-and-carriage rides await the unsuspecting tourist or smitten couple; whilst rickshaws that look as though they might have been imported from the 19th Century mission from West Side to East Side- often transporting a few power-suits across town without ever leaving the park.

To the unassuming observer, watching this network of leisure, business and pleasure unfold so seamlessly is testament to beauty and intelligence of Central Park’s design and development. It is not just a big patch of tree-lined grassland in the middle of a crazy urban powerhouse. Central Park is carefully zoned to accommodate cyclists, runners, rickshaws, vendors, street artists, buskers, sand-castle builders, baseball pitchers, and of, course- the wide-eyed tourist with camera.

Previous Editions

1. Cycling in Shanghai