Peterborough Pulse Returns – George Street is open for community fun!

July 15th, 2016

By Hillary Flood, GreenUP Transportation Programs Coordinator

Following in the footsteps of other cities across the continent, Peterborough has successfully joined the Open Streets movement. Peterborough Pulse, an Open Streets event through the heart of downtown, is gearing up for its second annual event.

It’s hard to believe that a full year has passed since the city experienced its first large-scale Open Streets event, Peterborough Pulse. Open Streets was, at the time, an entirely new concept in our community.


The idea was to use the existing urban landscape, namely our streets, in creative and unexpected ways to promote active transportation and healthy communities. It was an idea that was enthusiastically embraced by participants of all ages, and the resounding request was for more streets to be opened for biking, strolling, playing, and shopping.

This coming Saturday, Peterborough Pulse will bring the city together once again to reimagine George Street. From 9am to 3pm, you will be able to walk and bike down the middle of the street and participate in a plethora of activities, from axe throwing to star gazing.

For 2016, your Pulse route stretches from Parkhill Road to Sherbrooke Street, and extends along Charlotte Street to Louis Street. Participants may choose to walk or bike to the event, as the route easily connects to many local trails.

The Rotary Greenway Trail, the Trans Canada Trail, and the London Street pedestrian bridge lead you to the north end of the route, while the Hunter Street bridge and pedestrian bridge just south of Millennium Park allow access to the south end. Once you reach George Street, you can jog, bike, skate, and roll the 2km route as many times as you like.

Sue Sauve, Chair of the Pulse Steering Committee and Transportation Demand Management Planner with the City of Peterborough, is excited to be part of Pulse again this year.

“For me, Pulse represents the culmination of years of work to make Peterborough more walking and cycling friendly,” says Sauve, “In creating the Pulse event, we have woven together people’s love of walking and cycling with a fun way to explore downtown and interact with different groups in our community.”

There will be a lot to explore! Over 75 different community groups and businesses have joined Pulse this year, capturing the city’s colourful, unique identity.

Participants will discover new and exciting recreational activities, experience local entertainment, connect with new initiatives, and learn about healthy communities all while enjoying a vibrant and active public space.

Along the route you can expect playful installations such as gigantic Jenga, elaborate hopscotch, bicycle playgrounds, and community chalk murals. GreenUP will be bringing back a pop-up park to the street again this year and experts will be demonstrating and leading try-it activities in yoga, basketball, dance, and martial arts.

In the downtown area, you will find sidewalk sales and music on every block. Activity maps and schedules are available at ptbopulse.com, but one of the best elements of Peterborough Pulse is being surprised by the unexpected.

So, how do you prepare for the unexpected?

Dress for comfort in whatever weather arrives on Saturday as Pulse will run rain or shine. Bring your bike, skateboard, scooter, or stroller to get you from end to end of the 2km route, along with a refillable water bottle to fill up at the PTBO H20 Water Filing Station, which will be located in front of City Hall. Arrive with a playful sense of adventure to see what the community has in store for you!

Peterborough Pulse enhances our community’s social fabric, positively impacting the way citizens connect and interact with each other and their city. This initiative wouldn’t be possible without the support of Pulse funders and sponsors including the Investor’s Group, Peterborough Public Transit, LLF Law Offices, Wild Rock, Offices that Work, On the Move, Healthy Kids Community Challenge, and the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

Peterborough Pulse is a collaborative project of the City of Peterborough, the Downtown Business Improvement Association, the Peterborough Bicycle Advisory Committee, GreenUP, B!KE: the Community Cycling Hub, Peterborough Public Health, and Peterborough Square. For more information on Pulse, please contact Hillary Flood, PTBOPulse Coordinator, at Hillary.flood@www.greenup.on.ca, or 705-745-3238.

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