Sometimes, when change happens slowly and incrementally, it’s hard to remember how bad the status quo was in the past and how many nice things have happened in the intervening years. The improvements to the streets of New York have been like that — it’s sometimes hard to remember when Times Square was full of cars and bereft of places to sit your butt down, or when bike lanes were fading paint jobs at best.

So we love this video from Streetfilms, which shows how the city has changed over time — and how much for the better:

Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free. All donations DOUBLED!

Maybe in another eight years or so we’ll be saying, “Wow, remember when cars were allowed in Times Square? Remember when there was only one bike lane on that avenue?” Who knows?

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.