New York’s Bicycle Sunday saved

Friends of Westchester County, Con Edison provide funds

In New York’s Westchester County Sundays have been the day for biking, but a cut to public funding put the popular program, that closes 6.5 miles of road to motorized vehicles on Sundays, in jeopardy.

Fortunately, in late December, the Friends of Westchester County Parks and Con Edison announced a public and private partnership that will save the popular Bicycle Sundays program. The agreement keeps the 6.5-mile stretch of the historic Bronx River Parkway open to bicyclists and other non-motorized users on a series of Sundays each year.

The new Westchester County budget adopted earlier this month by the Board of Legislators had put the future of the program at doubt. “The Bicycle Sundays program has been the most popular Westchester County Parks program since its inception in 1974,” said Friends of Westchester County Parks board of trustees chairman, Liz Bracken-Thompson to BikeRadar. “Friends of Westchester County Parks and Con Edison both realized the importance of this program to the community, and we came up with the funds needed to preserve it.”

The event, which runs through the six municipalities of White Plains, Hartsdale/Greenburgh, Scarsdale, Eastchester, Tuckahoe and Yonkers, draws large number of riders, attracting 60,000 participants on weekend dates in May, June and September except Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends.

A donation of $20,000 by Con Edison will be matched with $20,000 from Friends of Westchester County Parks to pay for Westchester County’s most popular parks program, and keep rides on the historic Parkway going through 2012.

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