NYC has a very forward looking Department of Transport, with a mission to make it easy for residents and visitors to move around the city easily, WalkNYC Program
The layout of NYC is historical and for that reason its buildings and streets reflect a city built as time moved along rather than one planned from the beginning to specifically to support people and business in the best way possible. Also many streets were laid out when most people got around either on foot or using a horse and cart. So navigating around NYC streets can be a work of art and depend on an encyclopaedic knowledge of shortcuts, lanes and one-way streets, especially in Lower Manhattan. In most cases the streets weren’t built to accommodate large numbers of fast moving cars, bicycles or even the numbers of people who now daily trudge along them. It’s not unusual for native New Yorkers to get lost in unfamiliar parts of the city, so the confusion that faces some visitors to the city is well understood.
To help out the DOT has implemented policies to reduce the number of cars, create pedestrian plazas and introduce bike lanes. They are also responsible for the very successful Bike share Program. And it has always been a part of the bike share program that there would be a signage system that supported peoples bike riding and walking. Now there are new signs, part of the WalkNYC program which help guide people especially in the more confusingly complex street layouts in some parts of NYC like Chinatown. Anyone will be able to consult the up to 100 signs which will be put up over the next 18 months. A lot of thought has gone into the signage, and they are literally state of the art with interactive graphics and computerized information to make it very easy for people to get the inforamtion they require.
There is another WalkNYC program, or rather a pre-existing one which is designed to help keep New Yorkers fit by offering walks all around the city at the weekend, especially along the waterfront and areas of the city which have great views. With funding provided by Empire blue cross Blue Shield, trained walking instructors accompany groups of walkers of all ages and give them tips on technique. Walks are always 1 hr or more. See Weekend Walk Program