Now in its fourth year of operations, the Vanderbilt Open Street is the only volunteer-run Open Street of its kind in Brooklyn, and one of the most visible in New York City. The Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council sponsors the Open Streets program under an agreement with the New York City Department of Transportation. Dozens of community members have volunteered to help plan and manage the program, conduct neighborhood outreach, raise funds, schedule programming, and design an attractive and safe environment for the thousands of visitors who enjoy the avenue during Open Street hours. The program also employs staff who deploy and monitor the barriers that close Vanderbilt Avenue to traffic and provide supplemental sanitation assistance while the Open Street is in operation.
Vanderbilt Avenue’s Open Street program began in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic as an economic relief initiative intended to help restaurants remain open, keep staff employed and serve customers. Today, more than twenty restaurants on Vanderbilt Avenue help fund the program, as well as assist in its operations. The Open Street is further funded through donations from community members, local businesses, and corporate sponsors, with additional funding from the City of New York.
In addition to enjoying on-street dining at the many restaurants on Vanderbilt Avenue, visitors come to walk, run, play, meet friends, picnic, and enjoy entertainment and family programming. We’ve even had several couples celebrate weddings here. Vanderbilt Avenue is also a favorite corridor for cyclists on weekends.
The 2023 Open Street season begins April 21 and runs through October 29. We hope you enjoy your visit, and return often!