Open Streets Knoxville


Thank you to everyone who attended Open Streets Knoxville 2024 in Happy Holler on North Central Street and Emory Place and made it a success!  

We're looking forward to seeing you all in the streets again next year!




Open Streets Knoxville detours motor vehicles from urban streets to connect community members with local businesses and organizations, creating space for people of all ages and abilities to walk, bike, dance, and much more! Distinct from a street festival, Open Streets Knoxville gives residents an opportunity to explore their neighborhood and access local businesses in a safe, fun, and family-friendly way. Participants can enjoy being physically active and visiting local businesses on foot or by bike. The event encourages the use of active transportation and healthy living, and has a goal of giving residents an opportunity to reimagine our streets as public spaces.

The goal of Open Streets is to have at least one mile of Knoxville streets closed to motorized traffic. Our events bring thousands of people into the street! Bike Walk Knoxville depends heavily on community sponsors and businesses to help defray the substantial costs of Open Streets Knoxville events.  


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Why Open Streets?

Why hold an Open Streets event in Knoxville? Because Knoxville has a lot of streets, and it’s not every day that you can be in them car-free and care-free. Bring your whole family out for this unique opportunity to explore and experience Knoxville's roads without the presence of cars.

Open Streets gives people from all over Knoxville the chance to visit with neighbors, friends, and people from throughout the area, and get some exercise – all on city streets that will be closed to car traffic and open to walkers, joggers, cyclists, skaters and all other forms of people-powered movement.

Motor vehicles are detoured from the route allowing everyone the freedom to enjoy “open streets” safely and comfortably. Open Streets isn’t a race, parade, or competition; it’s a chance to enjoy Knoxville from a new perspective. Walk your dog, roller skate, blow bubbles and have fun because during Open Streets, the streets are yours!

With every Open Streets Knoxville event, we seek to accomplish the following objectives:

  1. Enhance the brand and identity of greater Knoxville as a progressive urban community
  2. Increase the health and activity of Knoxville area residents
  3. Promote and increase awareness for walking and biking as acceptable and safe modes of travel on public streets
  4. Increase neighborhood mobility, livability, and access
  5. Provide a unique, sociable, and fun experience for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds
  6. Provide a free public event affordable for all

The Global Open Streets Movement

One of the first and largest Open Streets (A.K.A. Cyclovias) in the world is held in Bogotá, Colombia. Every Sunday and holiday, every week of the year, the city closes down over 70 miles of roadways to cars to invite people to bike, walk, talk, exercise, picnic, sunbathe, etc. in the streets. People from all backgrounds come together in this beautiful community-inspiring event.

What is a Cyclovia?
Cyc˙lo˙via (/ˌsiːklɵˈviː.ə/) n.
A Spanish word signifying the temporary closure of a network of streets to cars so that they become “open” to people. During Cyclovia anyone can bike, walk, skate and participate in fun, free activities. The first Open Streets Initiative was called Cyclovia.

Check out this video to learn about the Open Streets movement: