Parking permits will help

for The Brooklyn Paper
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I recently spoke out in support of residential parking permits for Downtown, specifically in the area surrounding the Atlantic Yards project and the upcoming Barclays Center. I have long been a supporter of these permits; even before this development, I felt that permits offered a viable solution to the “park-and-ride” issue at the Atlantic Center terminal.

In fact, Mayor Bloomberg’s citywide sustainability proposal — PlaNYC 2030 — included a congestion pricing plan that would incorporate residential permit parking. Residents with parking permits would be allowed to park in established parking zones during the day. Residential drivers would be charged an annual fee to acquire resident-only permits, the fee being comparable with similar permit programs in other major cities. In the past, I have strongly supported this proposal.

Of course, there are other residential parking permit proposals in existence, including plans that would enact pre-set time periods when the permit’s usage would be viable. I believe that it is important to have on ongoing dialogue with the community concerning this issue so that I can communicate most effectively with the administration and the state Department of Transportation.

Many people may not be aware that currently, motorists are only eligible to obtain permit parking from New York State if they have a certified disability. This, of course, excludes the vast majority of New York motorists from enjoying what should not be a luxury — the right to park in their own neighborhood. This is not just a win for residents, but a win for New York state as well. Consider this: a parking permit that requires all auto vehicles owned in Downtown to be registered in New York (and with New York state license plates) in order to qualify, would increase state income. Keep in mind that New York registration requires both liability and accident insurance.

I am certainly not alone in supporting residential permit parking in New York. State Sen. Daniel Squadron and Assemblywoman Joan Millman introduced legislation that would do just that. The latest in a considerable amount residential parking permit-related legislation to come out of the Council is a resolution recently introduced by myself and Councilman Steve Levin calling for the passage of those state bills, and the implementation of residential parking permits within the city.

I strongly believe that residential parking permits have the potential to reduce traffic congestion, pollution emissions, needless traffic accidents (especially those that lead to pedestrian fatalities), and noise pollution. This would especially be appreciated in Downtown as we face the long-term development of the Atlantic Yards project.

Councilwoman Letitia James represents parts of Prospect Heights.

Updated 7:12 am, October 8, 2010
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Reasonable discourse

Ron from Fort Greene says:
What I don't understand is why residents can't be provided at least one of these permits for free, or at least for a fee that is tax deductible. It seems unreasonable to require people to pay for the right to park in their own neighborhoods. Also, by selling these permits you're unfairly penalizing poorer residents, since the cost naturally advantages residents with more disposable income.
Oct. 8, 2010, 6:59 am
Carlo Trigiani from Brooklyn Heights says:
I'd pay to park in my neighborhood in a heartbeat. The fees could go toward maintaining the community. In DUMBO, Brooklyn Heights and Carroll Gardens - upkeep on BBP. $500 a year on 1000 cars equals a half a million bucks to maintain the park.

Perhaps this would incentivize some of our neighbors who have weekends homes outside the city to register their cars in Brooklyn, where they primarily reside. Wonder if they are paying NYC income taxes? Another windfall!

And the folks who drive from LI and work on Wall Street, maybe if they were disuaded from parking in our residential communities, they would take public transportation. What a great thing that would be. More riders equal more revenue equals better service and lower cost per commuter.


Carlo Trigiani
Oct. 8, 2010, 8:52 am
Joey from Clinton Hills says:
Hooray for Tish! This is a great idea.

It seems absurd, but I think if we get the out of state plates (often with no insurance) off our streets, our car insurance will go down.
Oct. 8, 2010, 9:53 am
Scottilla from Midwood says:
Way to attract paying customers to the restaurants and businesses in the neighborhood!
Oct. 8, 2010, 11:23 am
ch from bh says:
Why doesn't one parking permit come FREE for each house? My taxes have gone up more than once a year since I bought -- now I have to pay to park?

Parking Permits are a GREAT idea. Absolutely necessary in the face of Ratner's smothering exhaustful embrace.

But give one free to each homeowner. We pay ENOUGH in taxes already.
Oct. 8, 2010, 11:24 am
Craig from Prospect Heights says:
I live next door to the AY project and this is a great solution to what will soon be a serious issue.

We have already been impacted with the virtual disappearance of Pacific Street parking on two of three blocks from 5th Avenue to Vanderbilt.

To Carlo's suggestion, even a more nominal fee would help the immediate vicinity, so long as it doesn't disappear into a general fund. I lived in Washington, DC, for years and parking permits were an annual requirement and cost in the range of $50.
Oct. 8, 2010, 11:31 am
sal from brighton beach says:
If this goes through , it will set a precedent that will affect every community where a sports or music venue exists or will exist.
This won't guarantee parking for the residents of the community. It's only another way for the City to put their hands into your pocket & then the money goes into the politicians pockets.
We're taxed to death as it is in this city. These parking permits area Bad Idea !
Oct. 8, 2010, 12:15 pm
Mike from Ft Greene says:
All parking should be paid, whether through permits or otherwise. It makes absolutely no sense for vehicle owners to feel that they're entitled to store their personal property on public streets at public expense. Private use of public property has to be paid for.
Oct. 8, 2010, 12:18 pm
Or from Yellow Hook says:
Parking Tickets or Permits, but you can't have both.
Oct. 8, 2010, 4:50 pm
boof from brooklyn says:
I don't have a car; can I receive the cash value instead of a free parking permit?
Oct. 11, 2010, 8:11 am
dporpentine from Flatbush says:
I pay too much in taxes to support cars and their need to park. I'd like car owners to pay their fair share: the full upkeep costs of their spot on the road over the course of the year, including the environmental costs. Stop looking for handouts, drivers!
Oct. 11, 2010, 9:20 am
Jabir ibn Hayyan from Park Slope says:
What boof said.

Some of the permit fees could be returned to households that do not have any cars at all since we're doing our part to resolve the "parking problem".
Oct. 11, 2010, 9:21 am
Beezy from Ft Greene says:
This is a HORRIBLE idea. There isn't enough parking on the street for each unit to have even one spot. This will only make it easier for people who live near Atlantic Yards (who, living close to basically every train in existance) to keep a car that they don't really know.

The Shoup solution is the real deal - meter every single block, priced to maximize revenue. Residents will save because they aren't paying for cars they don't need, and residents of Nassau county and L.I. can actually start paying for the pleasure of everything NYC provides them.
Oct. 11, 2010, 12:20 pm
Or from Yellow Hook says:
"Working Families" = Marxists in nice clothes.
Oct. 11, 2010, 3:22 pm
petunia from park slope says:
Anyone who's visited other areas of the country that use parking permits to reduce congestion has seen that it's not evil and it does work. If you can afford a car, $25 or so a year for a permit is not going to break you, and if the money goes to the street maintenance it's good for everyone. People w/out permits are allowed free parking for a limited time - long enough to shop or dine at a restaurant. Bring permits to Park Slope!
Oct. 12, 2010, 11 am
jay from pslope says:
This is SOOOOO stupid. Really people, you like being hostage to the MTA? You like crummy service and rising fares so much that you are willing to be strangled by the mayor and these fools? Oh, and what if the city has an emergency how are you getting out? Guess what, the MTA won't take you! This is just one more way for crooks to steal from you! Get rid of all parking regulations (except for things like not blocking hydrants, etc) making people move their cars all the time for some stupid parking reg only wastes HUGE amounts of gasoline and kills productivity and hurts local bizz. FOOOOOOOOOL
Oct. 13, 2010, Midnight
jay from pslope says:
One other SMALL thing, Letitia, why in the world should residences have to pay MORE for a permit when they had their houses and business taken away by the state to give land to Ratner, and subsidize his plan with tax payer dollars all so that he can break the deal and sell out to a Russian rumored gangster? REALLY?
Oct. 13, 2010, 12:04 am

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