100 Activations for NYC

Supporting new public spaces, connecting New Yorkers during the pandemic

July – Dec 2021

In the second half of 2021, Street Lab added one hundred new activations on the streets of NYC that supported neighborhoods hit hard by COVID. We are committed to using challenging moments like these to activate public space in ways that include, connect, and lift up every New Yorker.


We added 100 new deployments of Street Lab’s signature programs to the streets, including pop-up reading rooms, art studios, obstacle courses, and more. Street Lab Teens led community chalk murals. And we launched partnerships with artists and other cultural groups to bring more voices to the street, including:

  • Red Hook Art Project (art workshops)
  • Gotham Yardbird Sanctuary (jazz)
  • Artist Isis Rivas (bookmaking workshops)
  • Artist Kristin Leyko (chalk murals)
  • Artist Lexy Ho-Tai (textile installations)
  • Street Lab’s 2021 Artist-in-Residence, Sanika Phawde (drawing on location)


We landed on newly-created Open Streets, at NYCHA public housing developments, and in other public spaces in the 33 of the hardest hit neighborhoods of the city.


“Each day that we’re on the street, we’re reminded of how much has been restored in since the height of the pandemic, but also how much remains lost for some New Yorkers. At Street Lab, we remain committed to finding ways for public space to include, connect, and lift up every one of us. These 100 activations are one way that we can help the city recover and also point the way to a different, better future for our streets.”

—Leslie Davol, Exec. Director, Street Lab.


Partners included the NYC Dept. of Transportation, Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Safety, and community-based organizations managing new Open Streets and other public spaces, including:

  • 34th Ave Open St Coalition for Open Streets in Jackson Heights/Corona (QU)
  • Sunset Park BID (Sunset Park, BK)
  • Red Hook Initiative (Red Hook, BK)
  • New Harlem East Merchants’ Association/Uptown Grand Central (East Harlem, MN)
  • Community League of the Heights (Washington Heights, MN)
  • Caldwell Youth/Caldwell Enrichment Programs (Morrisania, BX)

Supported by:

  • Con Edison Arts Al Fresco
  • NYC Dept. of Transportation
  • Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Safety

July – August

  • Four Tuesdays at St. Nicholas Houses in Harlem, Manhattan
  • Six Tuesdays on W9th St in Red Hook, Brooklyn
  • Five Tuesdays on W159th St and W164th St in Washington Heights, Manhattan
  • Six Wednesdays on Jennings St in Morrisania, Bronx
  • Four Wednesdays on Blake Ave in Brownsville, Brooklyn
  • Six Thursdays on Hill St in Stapleton, Staten Island
  • Three Thursdays on 34th Ave in Jackson Heights, Queens
  • Four Fridays on W120th St in Harlem, Manhattan
  • Three Saturdays on Shore Ave in Jamaica, Queens
  • Three Sundays on Morrison Ave in Soundview, Bronx
  • Four Sundays on W103rd St on the Upper West Side, Manhattan

Sept – Oct

  • Pleasant Ave, East Harlem, Manhattan
  • Patchen Ave and Lafayette Ave, Bushwick, Brooklyn
  • Cromwell Ave in Concourse, Bronx
  • 90th Ave in Hollis, Queens
  • Foch Blvd in Ozone Park, Queens
  • Parsons Blvd in Downtown Jamaica, Queens
  • In front of the Queens Library in Jamaica, Queens
  • 5th Ave Bay Ridge, Brooklyn
  • City Hall Park, Mahattan
  • Putnam Triangle Plaza, Brooklyn

100 Activations wins a 2021 Best of the City Award

Time Out New York’s Best of the City Awards for 2021 recognized 100 Activations for NYC, which brought a total of 165 activations to the streets of New York in just six months. Thank you to our staff, volunteers, partners, and funders who made this work possible. Read more about this award.

100 Activations for NYC was supported by

Street Lab cultural programs are supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, and citywide by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.