While I absolutely applaud the DOT for supporting such a program, as a physician who practices medicine in Washington Heights, my gut feeling is that the streets are open but are not inclusive to those who need it most.
The City of LA recognized in CicLAvia an opportunity to give Angelenos a taste of what LA can be like, at least for a bit, without cars. It will temporarily turn the streets over to those who deserve them the most. Us.
I was in Paris in September and from what I could see, Velib has taken the town by storm. The racks are ubiquitous in large areas of the city, and the streets are well stocked with furiously pedaling Parisians.