NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Prospect Park is going car-free.

The park’s entire loop drive went car-free as part of an experiment this summer, which officials said was a success with park-goers.

“Prospect Park is Brooklyn’s backyard,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “And I have always wanted it to be the safe, quiet refuge for Brooklyn’s families it was intended to be. Restoring Prospect Park as a car-free oasis will improve the lives of the millions who use the park today and of generations to come.”

The park’s East Drive will remain open to cars during morning rush hours until January 2 of next year, when they will be banned. The Department of Transportation estimates recreational users outnumber cars during morning rush hours 1,000 to 300.

“This is really about getting back to the original idea of this park, restoring it to its original purpose. It needs to be a place for everyone, and it needs to be a place that’s safe, and it needs to be a place that people can fully enjoy,” de Blasio said.

WCBS 880’s Mike Smeltz found one man named Eric, who called the ban good news as he took a peaceful walk in the park.

“I’m tired of having to fight idiot drivers when I’m running around the park. The park should be a safe place. It’s not a place for cars,” he said.

Of the “idiot drivers,” Eric said: “It’s New York. They drive like idiots. It’s how we all drive. It’s how people walk. They don’t pay attention. They think they own the road. They don’t realize it’s a shared space.”


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