Creating a Walking Plaza on Asbury Park’s Ocean Avenue

We have an idea…

Vehicles have taken over our waterfront landscape, and we believe that people can take the space back. One way that people are succeeding in creating places for people on city streets is tactical urbanism.

That’s the message of “The quick way to make pedestrian plazas,” a new video by City Beautiful, a YouTube channel that features the strategies of tactical urbanism for the edification of city planners and livable-streets advocates. It mixes boosterism with some helpful pointers, such as best practices for dealing with Americans With Disability Act requirements and businesses that need freight loading zones.

There was a time in the early years of Asbury Park before cars were prioritized, that our waterfront was for people. Imagine restaurants and cafes, musicians, activities, and people strolling, bicycling and scootering along a car-free Ocean Avenue. Some have cited possible difficulty getting trash pickup and deliveries, and inconvenience to customers if they have to walk to their establishments. We know that businesses thrive all over the world where traffic is eliminated or reduced.

There are a (limited) number parking spaces on our waterfront, causing a continuous flow of vehicles all season with drivers  circling, looking to snag an empty space.  This constant (often torturously slow) movement of vehicles is the definition of traffic. The effect of traffic everywhere is environmentally disastrous, leading to disease, and catastrophic numbers of injuries and deaths yearly to people outside and inside vehicles.

We believe that city leaders get that we need to do something about traffic and we’re working on a solution to create a safe, inviting car-free,  or much more people-centric Ocean Avenue. We’re looking for ideas for jitneys, pedicabs, other ways to get people to their beach destinations. Help us reimagine Asbury’s waterfront. We might also want to consider some tactical urbanism!



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