Wheel bad news in Bay Ridge as city puts meters on last free block

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A legendary oasis of free parking on Third Avenue will dry up this summer when the city installs new muni-meters between 83rd and 84th streets.

For years, residents and shoppers have enjoyed free parking on the strip, needing only to move their cars during alternate-side parking restrictions on Monday or Tuesday mornings.

The Department of Transportation said it is installing the meters in response to complaints from local businesses, which claim that residents are hogging spaces.

“People park their cars here for days,” said Jimmy Hassan, manager of the bodega on the block. “My customers have to double-park for a pack of gum.”

But installation of meters has some residents feeling cheated because free parking is already rare in Bay Ridge’s commercial districts.

In fact, meters run virtually the full length of Third Avenue — from the Towers to the Narrows — except for this one-block quirk.

“People can’t find parking as it is in this area,” said Kostas Koumbanios who lives in the neighborhood and works at Rustica Café on the block. “This is just going to be a hassle for those who don’t have garages.”

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Reader Feedback

Steve from Bklyn says:
This is good for businesses. Glad the city is doing it.
March 31, 2011, 8:48 am
common sense from bay ridge says:
There was free parking on that block because there are more private homes than stores there. That is the unique thing about that block.
March 31, 2011, 9:35 am
Joey from Clinton Hills says:
this is sure to lead to more illegal curb cuts.
March 31, 2011, 12:16 pm
Stew from Bay Ridge says:
I have a small apartment and need some storage for my books, clothes and old furniture. Can I buy a large box and put it in a free parking space? I promise I'll move it once a week for alternate side parking.
March 31, 2011, 3:09 pm
Tom Prendergast from Bay Ridge says:
Those homes on third avenue, along with many of the residents, were there long before those businesses that now occupy the buildings across the street. Why shouldn't those home owners have the same free parking as those on the side streets below third avenue. This is about nothing but money.
March 31, 2011, 5:28 pm
Mat from Marine Park says:
The city is going to both cut public transit and reduce public parking at the same time. This is good for business? Business interests, as well as people interests, are served by getting the most people to and from places of business in the least amount of time and hassle, by however many means available. Do the math. Street parking in an area of Brooklyn that is an hour or two from other areas of Brooklyn alone, to say nothing of other boroughs, should not be considered the same as parking in Times Square. "You can't get there from here..." applies in this case.
March 31, 2011, 6:04 pm
Rex from Bay ridge says:
the guy from the bodega parks his white gmc suv on the avenue as well for days at a time . what an idiot !
March 31, 2011, 7:22 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Many of those houses and apartments do not have their own parking, so residents need to park on the street. I know some will agrue with me and say that the subway is one block over of Fourth Avenue, but not everyone will be taking it. Why should residential blocks have metered parking anyway? If this was a commercial or retail block, then I would understand that, but that's not the case here. I used to remember some places in the city where you can park after 6 or 7 PM after the sign lifted, but now muni meters replaced them. Is Bloomberg really that desperate for money?
April 1, 2011, 12:36 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:

Have you ever, ever been to Bay Ridge?
April 1, 2011, 7:46 am
Suzanne from Ditmas Park says:
The reason there's not enough parking is obviously because it's still cheap. Raise the prices so that 15% of parking is free at any time and you'll be able to park. It's just the people who want a free ride at the expense of the rest of us who are unhappy.
April 1, 2011, 10:01 am
boof from brooklyn says:
Stew -- that's a good idea, but you'll have to make it a box with wheels and an engine. Still might be cheaper than a storage space.

Also Suzanne 1.
April 1, 2011, 10:14 am
the Facts from Bay Ridge says:
For every person (1) in Bay Ridge there are 2.1 cars.....
April 1, 2011, 1:26 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Not every street has to be metered or restrictive parking. People already pay to use the roads through taxes for infrastructure, and having them metered is like a double tax. In a way, they already did pay to use the roads, so it's not getting a free pass. If that block isn't much of a business area, then why should it be metered? It just doesn't make any sense. Some of those that live there may have to work where they can't get there by either buses or subways, so they need a car. It's not like residents will be given a residential parking permit either.
April 1, 2011, 4:41 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:

How many businesses are on that street?
April 1, 2011, 5:32 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Other Michael, you are missing the point here. This is about why this block has to become metered when there is enough of that already in the area. Let people have a place to park where they can feel unhindered by time, and even don't have to wake up so early just to move them when the meters go into affect. How would you feel if cyclists would have to start paying parking meters, because that can happen sooner or later? I am sure your kind wouldn't like it. When metered parking was first introduced, it was only for areas that were either commercial or retail, while residential areas were spared from this. Unfortunately, some people such as Bloomberg and Shoupe want metered parking everywhere with the rates higher than before. Enough with this saying that we drivers get a free ride, because it's already been explained that we don't. If anyone is getting a free ride right now, it's cyclists, and they don't even have to get licensing and registration unlike all other vehicles that have to despite claiming how much they want to be treated yet don't want to pay a single penny for using the road.
April 1, 2011, 10:32 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:

First What do you mean my by "your kind"?

Parking meters are piut on streets with stores so that people CAN find a spot in a shopping district.

So the point is Do you know how many stores are on that block? How is is zoned? Have you been there?
April 2, 2011, 7:41 am
Rhywun from Bay Ridge says:
That block is zoned as mixed residential/commercial just like the rest of 3rd Avenue, so it seems likely it will be lined with businesses eventually. As for residential blocks, maybe some sort of residential permit system might be in order. I don't have a car here but if I did, I could not imagine dealing with the current chaos.
April 2, 2011, 5:13 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Other Michael, why does the say of the businesses have to outweight of those who live there? The residents have probably been on that block longer, and they should have their say as well. Not every part of the neighborhood has to be metered parking. At least keep the residential blocks with free parking.
April 4, 2011, 3:24 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
April 5, 2011, 6:12 pm

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