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Ridgites demand more time to park

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Merchants on Fifth Avenue in Bay Ridge are demanding the city increase the time shoppers are allowed to park along the strip, claiming the present one-hour limit doesn’t give clients enough time to go from store to store— and many times results in them getting expensive parking tickets.

Joseph Loccisano, owner of Rocco’s Pizza between 78th and 79th streets, has collected over 1,000 signatures in the past month from shoppers and business owners on Fifth Avenue who say that they want the city to extend parking times to two hours so that shoppers can visit more than one business at a time — without getting ticketed.

“There are people being ticketed like crazy and it’s killing business,” said Loccisano.

Fifth Avenue has about 330 shops between 65th and 85th streets, with just 21 vacancies. But retailers say the number of empty storefronts could rise significantly if shoppers who drive to the area aren’t given more time to stroll the strip.

“It’s a very busy business district; it needs to be treated that way,” said Loccisano.

Fifth Avenue between 65th and 95th streets has 255 parking spaces, according to the city, and merchants say that inefficient rules create rampant double parking, despite the availability of an additional 205 spots in a city-owned parking garage between 85th and 86th streets.

“It doesn’t work,” said Jim Clark, president of the Fifth Avenue Business Improvement District, of the lot. “It fills up and it never alleviated the double parking like it was supposed to when it was built in 1970.”

The Department of Transportation says it is studying how drivers use the spaces to figure out ways to make parking more readily available.

That could mean raising the price of metered spots (as it has done in Park Slope), changing loading zones, or even barring non-commerical vehicles from parking during certain times to accommodate delivery vehicles — something that was put in place earlier this year on Church Avenue in Flatbush.

And merchants we talked to said they’ll take any plan that makes parking easier — even if it means jacking up the price of metered spots.

“To get a two-hour meter or to extend the limits, the benefit is more important than the price,” said Loccisano.

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Reader Feedback

Resident from PPW says:
LOL.... funny article. Does anyone really believe that Imperial Bloomberg and his cronies (especially DOT commissioner Sadik-Khan) cares about people who drive automobiles or trucks? It would be great if the mayor could have figured out an innovative way to make things better for the car and non-car owners. Instead, it is all about his legacy and automobile owners don't figure into that story line.
Oct. 17, 2011, 5:16 am
Chicken Underwear from Park Slope says:
How long can you stay in one store. A few shoppers might need more than an hour.

I bet the real issue is that the merchants are upset because they can't store they cars in front of their businesses all day long.

One hour meters are good for business, but these store owners are to short sighted to see that.
Oct. 17, 2011, 7:56 am
Frank from WT says:
Chicken Underwear - the one hour time limit makes it nearly impossible to go out to dinner without having to go to your car and drop more coins in the meters...never understood the one hour parking rule
Oct. 17, 2011, 8:20 am
ty from pps says:
If the merchants in Bay Ridge honestly think their businesses are dependent on the VERY SMALL number of parking places, they are nutso. Seriously. There are only about 8 to 12 parking spots per block.
Oct. 17, 2011, 8:24 am
trans alt from bike city says:
Get rid of your car, and you can shop all day.
Oct. 17, 2011, 9 am
s from ppw says:
Drivers are the most spoiled and entitled minority in the city. They want more and more of everything but don't really want to pay the true costs.

At least Joseph Loccisano understands that they may have to raise the price of parking. Lots of politicians in his area will oppose that, however, since they have to pander to this minority.
Oct. 17, 2011, 9:03 am
Osito from Bay Ridge says:
These merchants have no clue. 90% of customers are coming on foot or public transit.

And there are barely enough parking spaces (a few hundred) to make a meaningful difference in a shopping district with hundreds of stores.
Oct. 17, 2011, 10:42 am
bkfrombirth from babyridge says:
According to the American Community Survey, from the last three year sample available, which is one of the most authoritative sources for household data, the zip code for bay ridge shows that a little over 50 percent of people who live there do not own a car. Moreover, as someone who grew up and lived in bay ridge for 20 years, there are only a handful of parking spaces on 5th ave. in total on each block. There are far more people shopping there who are not driving. If you measure the amount of people who use their car for shopping, a lot of times a single person in a large automobile, and the space the public space they consume, it is actually more efficient for them to make it harder to park, as it can non-drivers can number more in the same space. If I was a city planner, allowing people to park for longer hours or at a cheaper price would not make sense for anyone except the relatively few drivers.
Oct. 17, 2011, 10:52 am
henry ford from bay ridge says:
"These merchants have no clue. 90% of customers are coming on foot or public transit."

Yeah, but the 10% with cars are the ones spending $$$, not the skells that are walking around.
Oct. 17, 2011, 11:44 am
bkfrombirth from babyridge says:
"Yeah, but the 10% with cars are the ones spending $$$, not the skells that are walking around."

That is not supported by the data. First, more than 50 percent of people in Bay Ridge do not own a a car (read my post above). Second, while there is a no study of how many people drive to shop in bay ridge, intuitively it is lower than the amount who own a car. This seems to me apparent when I walking on 5th avenue and see people leaving the fruit stands and walking to 86th st. So a relatively small minority could never match the revenue generated by all those people shopping without cars.
Oct. 17, 2011, 12:03 pm
Chicken Underwear from Park Slope says:
An hour might be a sort period of time if you want to drive to a long meal in a nice restaurant. But if the meters were for 2 hours nobody would ever find a spot.

Don't the nice restaurants have valet parking anyway.
Oct. 17, 2011, 3:49 pm
John from Williamsburg says:
People who live in a city with the largest mass transit system known to man, yet still insist they're gonna drive around Bay Ridge in a 1978 Mercury Marquis crying about there's no parking ... well ... they are the enemy and must be destroyed.

It is a well deserved and fitting torture that they should be made to drive around the block hundreds and hundreds of thousands of times and never find a single parking spot, until they eventually succumb to their own gas fumes as their inert lives pass away unnoticed, still clutching the steering wheel at 3 and 9 and gunning the petroleum pedal as the world fades from before their eyes.
Oct. 17, 2011, 4:43 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off, enough with the anti-car ramblings, because I find some of them insulting. Nevertheless, it's annoying to come back every hour just to increase the time. With muni-meters it becomes even harder, because one would have to open up their cars and place them on their dashboards whereas with individual meters, you just have to put in coins in them. However, the rates keep on getting higher, and it's becoming harder to park there even if it's just short term. As for restaurants, unless they have on site parking, which a number don't, I doubt that an hour can cover it unless the service is fast or one doesn't mind putting more into it, and I would say the same for those waiting at barber shops or hair salons if the wait time is long. Let's not forget that some retail areas are losing parking spots thanks to the bike zealouts with their demand for bike lanes, which is citywide.
Oct. 17, 2011, 5:53 pm
Chris from Bushwick says:
Nobody cares if you find the "anti-car ramblings" insulting, Tal, because nobody who actually lives here cares what you think.
Oct. 17, 2011, 6 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
How do I explain this to a person like you Chris, because trying to is like getting the Muslim Brotherhood to accept Israel as an existing country? Keep in mind that not everyone can live where this is good transportation, not to mention that it is expensive according to realtors, which is why some of us drive. Why should those of who drive always have to give more just to park when the rates are as high as they are? When I was young, a quarter usually gave a half hour, while you could get ten minutes with a nickel, and fifteen minutes with a dime, though this varied on others. On a side note, I dare you to say your anti-car ramblings in auto centric, because they will find you insulting.
Oct. 17, 2011, 7:18 pm
ty from pps says:
"Keep in mind that not everyone can live where this is good transportation"

WE'RE TALKING ABOUT BAY RIDGE. Not Pleasantville. Tal, HUSH your face.
Oct. 17, 2011, 7:58 pm
S from PPW says:
If parking was 25 cents for 30 minutes when you were young, Tal, then inflation should probably make it at least four or five dollars per hour by now. Certainly no less than three.

Some of us live in the city and walk, bike, or take transit everywhere because it's too expensive to own a car!
Oct. 18, 2011, 10:28 am
henry ford from bay ridge says:
"Some of us live in the city and walk, bike, or take transit everywhere because it's too expensive to own a car!"

Yeah, and some of us wish to leave NYC once in a while, so we have cars.
Oct. 18, 2011, 2:08 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
I have a car. But I would never take it to a neighborhood restaurant.
Oct. 18, 2011, 2:22 pm
ty from pps says:
Seriously... what does having a car for special trips or even commuting have *anything* to do with the parking meters in Bay Ridge?!

I wouldn't be surprised if they found 1/2-hour meters to be a better choice for the local merchants!
Oct. 18, 2011, 3:05 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Another thing that changed when I was young that when meters only took quarters, they would give an hour, but in recent years, you can only get a half-hour, which shows how many places are raising rates, including my hometown.
Oct. 18, 2011, 7:28 pm
VZano from Bay Ridge says:
Why would a pizzeria want someone hogging a table for over an hour? You want turnover. 20-30 minutes and out.
A lot of these spots are taken all day by store workers.
Metered parking ends at 7:00PM, so if you go to dinner at 6:00, you only need to pay one hour and not worry about feeding the meter after that.
Oct. 19, 2011, 10:33 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
According to news reports, it's only illegal to feed the meters if you are paying someone to do this, otherwise it's not a crime if you are doing this to just your own car.
Oct. 19, 2011, 12:01 pm
ty from pps says:
Tal -- AGAIN, you're just WRONG. Feeding the meter is illegal. A 1-hour meter spot is just that. You may park there for 1 hour. Period. It doesn't matter if you put more quarters in the meter. The metermaid can chalk your tires, wait an hour, check back... if you're still there... you get a ticket.

1-hour parking it 1-hour parking regardless of if there is a parking meter or not.

Get it?

(Honestly, where do you get so misinformed? It's baffling.)
Oct. 19, 2011, 3:50 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Ty, what is that you don't get? The time limit on a parking meter is the maxium amount you can put on it. I have seen parking tickets that say nothing about feeding meters. The only thing they say about metered parking is expired parking, and that's it. In other words, a metermaid can only ticket you your time expired, but they can't if there is still time reguardless of how long. BTW, muni-meters do allow for extending time as does one get to do at certain malls garages. Of course, you wouldn't know that because you don't drive. If anyone here is misinformed, it's you, not me.
Oct. 20, 2011, 8:15 pm
ty from pps says:
Who says I don't drive?! It's very clear that I am far more qualified to drive than you are... You're proving yourself dimmer and dimmer each day.

You are straight-up WRONG about the limits for parking! You should look at the signs where you park... the SIGNS say 1-hour parking. It DOESN'T MATTER how much money you stick in the meter.... you can't "feed a meter" -- it's illegal.

You are wrong. You are misinformed. You are WILLFULLY ignorant. Just Hush your face.

(And Mall Garages?! What the hell does that have to do with anything?!?!?!?! Seriously? Good lord, man.)
Oct. 20, 2011, 11:34 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Ty, once again, you act defensive and resort to personal attacks, which shows your ignorance. I have seen what parking tickets look like, and there is nothing about feeding meters, just having time expired. If there is a law against it, I would love to see it, otherwise I will call your bluff. The only thing that comes close to this is paying someone to do it, which is what I heard on the news about what was being done by a courthouse in Queens. Some of the new ways such as Smart Park allows for people to set the time limit with their cell phones and even use them to extend the time the same way, which they will be billed on this. In a way, that is feeding the meter, just indirectly. Why would you care if someone keeps extending their time on those meters? To the city, it's still making revenue no matter what. Just go back to your biased world known as Streetsblog. Maybe there should meter parking for bicycles since they can always place their bikes anywhere for free, so a time limit on where they chain them should be imposed. Last time I checked, only broken meter parking implies the time limits, because there are no parking meters there, so time cannot be extended, while the rest can be done by extending time. You only believe that this is always the rule because you just personally hate anyone who drives.
Oct. 21, 2011, 11:51 am
ty from pps says:
From nyc.gov

"Parking rates for single-space parking meters and multiple-space muni-meters vary by street location across the five boroughs. Parking rates are posted on each parking meter and muni-meter, and the legal parking duration is posted in the top left hand corner of the green meter signs. Legal parking durations vary from 1 hour to 12 hours." Parking Violation Code 39 -- "Parking for longer than the maximum time permitted by sign, street marking or traffic control device." This is $65 in manhattan, $60 elsewhere. Get it?

Do you see? The limit is that posted on the SIGN. Not how many quarters you stick in the machine. God you are dense.

Why do you care if someone parks somewhere all day?!?! The purpose of limited time parking is not about revenue.... that's a side benefit. The purpose is to have TURNOVER so others may park! Get it?

"Last time I checked, only broken meter parking implies the time limits" -- YOU'RE WRONG. WRONG WRONG WRONG.

Also, why do you keep saying I don't drive?! I do. I use multiple modes of transport -- i.e., the most appropriate one. And guess what? You feeding the meter all day causes problems for ME. I should be able to find a parking spot within a reasonable distance or my destination, but you, sir, are selfishly hogging them for yourself because you are ignoring the law. Get it?
Oct. 21, 2011, 1:48 pm
ty from pps says:
By the way -- it's not a "personal attack" when i point out you are misinformed and willfully ignorant. It's calling you out. You can't have your own version of the facts. That's not how it works, Tal.

Here you can learn:
http://www.nyc.gov/html/dof/html/parking/park_tickets_violations.shtml

Of course, what do you care? You're in PLEASANTVILLE, right?!
Oct. 21, 2011, 1:51 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal said "Why would you care if someone keeps extending their time on those meters?"

Because I might want to park there too! There are only so many spots, so time is limited so more people get a chance to park.
Oct. 22, 2011, 3:41 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First of all, why can't we keep the dialog civil instead of constantly jumping on my back like the whole world seems to do to Israel despite the latter being the victim? It should be obvious that most of the problem stems from a small vocal minorety of special interest zealouts. The city gets the same amount of money if it is my car parked in the spot vs. another car, so it is only those fifth colummnist meter maids that could care otherwise. Besides, what if I am using the spot to park while working my job and making a contribution to society, unlike all those freeloaders? Reguardless it is well known that drivers pay far more than what they get in roadmanship, compared to how much bike lane users get vs. what they pay, if anything at all. Everyone needs a car. Not everyone needs a bike, or can ride a bike. With space at a preamium and revenues falling, it only makes sense to focus funding on that which pays its dues. Which is motorists. On a side note, the fact that I live in Pleasantville is inconsequensial to my comments, as I have every right to post here. The more veahment the tirades against my person, the more my point of view is strengthened. I will continue to debunk the undebunkables as feel it is my duty.
Oct. 22, 2011, 9:20 pm
John from Bay Ridge says:
All of you are idiots. Get a job and stop wasting your time writing or better yet get together and get it on!
Oct. 23, 2011, 8:30 pm
mg from from bay ridge says:
I grew up down the block from Rocco's. Many of the customers do walk but those of us who have moved out of Brooklyn will say no matter where in Bay Ridge you go and whether it is metered parking or not it is sometimes difficult to find a spot.
I will say that one hour is not necessarily enough time to shop or dine. If I am going to several stores along the avenue I would park my car and walk to the several different spots.
It is nearly impossible to park on 86th Street so where else are you going to want to park but either in the lot or at a meter. If at a meter just getting into Century could be more than 1 hour, never mind if you wanted to grab a bite to eat.
I do work and I still have an opinion as many of us do.
Many make a day out of the trip to the avenues trying to get all their shopping done.
Oct. 25, 2011, 5 pm

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