A diehard parking vigilante is trying to rid Park Slope of spot-hogging drivers — one homemade “citation” at a time.
A slew of motorists near Prospect Park West discovered two-page notes on their windshields last week, bashing them for disrupting the unspoken code of the street by leaving un-parkable half-spaces in front of and behind their cars.
“Your excessive use of parking space may or may not have been your fault,” the flier declares. “But leaving more space than necessary can deprive another driver of a parking spot.”
The detailed — but totally unofficial — “citations” have prompted strong reactions from neighbors who loathe, love, and are laughing at the Dirty Harry of the parking world.
“It’s a bit over the top, but it’s true that people park very sloppily,” said Park Slope resident Carl Makower.
Other drivers cheered the notes, saying they pinpoint a headache-inducing phenomena they’ve noticed for months.
“Parking is rough,” said Vick Narain, a doorman on Prospect Park West. “During the day, you’re driving around for half an hour or 45 minutes just to look for a space.”
The bold-typed notes come weeks after neighbors complained about a secret spot-saving “parking ring,” in which doormen at posh Prospect Park West buildings allegedly save parking spaces for paying tenants by intentionally taking up a spot and a half — then later inch cars forward to make room for other residents’ vehicles.
The car crusader blames the Prospect Park West bike lane for making parking tighter in the neighborhood, claiming the controversial two-way cycling path snatched up “numerous” spaces. (The city removed 22 spaces to install the 19-block long path).
But some cyclists bashed the fliers, saying they wrongly pin blame on the much-used strip of green paint.
“This person seems to continue the fantasy of ascribing the neighborhood’s problems to the bike path,” said lane supporter Eric McClure. “It’s not true.”
The fliers also declare that “free on-street parking is a precious public resource” — a declaration that some neighbors joked compares parking to drinking water or clean air.
It remains unclear who slipped the leaflets, which were first reported by Streetsblog, under windshield wipers along the roadway.
— with Ben Lockhart
Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling her at (718) 260-4505.