San Jose rolls through open streets for Viva CalleSJ

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

Hundreds of bikers travel up and down Alum Rock Avenue in East San Jose during Viva CalleSJ, an open streets event held Sunday, June 8. The street was closed to cars and other motorized vehicles for five hours. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

Editor’s Note: This article was written for Mosaic, an independent journalism training program for high school students who report and photograph stories under the guidance of professional journalists.

The latest edition of Viva CalleSJ took place June 9, closing six miles of San Jose roads for bikers, skateboarders and scooter riders. The route, “El Corazón: Downtown and Eastbound,” featured various live music shows and cultural performances and gave thousands of people a chance to explore Santa Clara Street, Alum Rock Avenue and White Road in a different way and without a car.

The event also had food trucks at every one of the “activity hubs,” which were located at San Jose City Hall, Alum Rock Village and Lake Cunningham Park. Bike Teacher, Good Karma Bikes and Community Cycles of California hosted free bike repair stations at the hubs.

  • Artists paint San Jose-themed murals at Alum Rock Village near the intersection of Alum Rock Avenue and White Road during Viva CalleSJ on Sunday, June 8. Alum Rock Village was one of three activity hubs for the event, which included performances, music and food trucks. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

  • A group of bikers explore East Santa Clara Street in Downtown San Jose on Sunday, June 8, during Viva CalleSJ, which closed six miles of city streets to vehicle traffic. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

  • City of San Jose employees ride in front of Five Wounds Portuguese National Parish on East Santa Clara Street during Viva CalleSJ on Sunday, June 8. The six-mile route ran from Downtown San Jose and East San Jose. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

  • A cyclist gets an elevated viewpoint and plays music from a speaker as he cruises on his art bike on East Santa Clara Street near Eighth Street in Downtown San Jose during Viva CalleSJ on Sunday, June 8. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

  • Calpulli Tonalehqueh Aztec Dancers perform a cultural dance at San Jose City Hall, which was one of three activity hubs during the Viva CalleSJ open streets event on Sunday, June 8, 2024. (Maxwell Alexander/Mosaic)

    Viva Calle has been a staple for many families since the city of San Jose first launched it in September 2018. Since then, it has been hosted multiple times a year with routes spanning the city. The next Viva CalleSJ is Sunday, Sept. 8. The location has not been announced yet.

    San Jose resident Gordon Smith, who participated in Viva Calle on June 9, said,  “events like these help promote cycling culture.” The Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies reported that 12.5% of citizens in Santa Clara County used bicycles as a method of transportation in early 2020.

    Smith also voiced his concerns about the cycling infrastructure in Santa Clara County and San Jose.

    “The city lacks long-distance bike paths,” he said, which he attributes to San Jose being a low-density city, especially compared to other urban centers like New York or Los Angeles.

    Maxwell Alexander is a member of the class of 2025 at Silver Creek High School in San Jose.

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    About the Author
    Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.