End ‘Free Parking’ on the Upper West Side? Community Board Tones Down Language in Resolution

By Alex Israel

Most members of the Community Board 7 Transportation Committee still seem convinced that allowing people to park at the curb for free is a bad use of public space. But they’re not all sure that calling for a wholesale change to parking policies is the best way to build support—so on Tuesday they decided to soften their tone.

As a follow up to October’s controversial forum on curbside use, the committee revisited a resolution they passed earlier this year, which called for the city to “discontinue the policy of providing free parking for private cars,” in consideration of “more productive and equitable uses of curbside space.” Citing the outpouring of testimony shared at the forum—and knowing the resolution would be up for a vote by the full board in December—Chair Howard Yaruss opened up the floor for discussion among the committee and the community.

Some committee members believed maintaining the progressive stance of the existing resolution was important. “This makes a strong statement,” said Ken Coughlin. “What we learned at this forum is that there are far fewer spaces than people who are hunting for them … and that there are arguably much better uses for the curbside space.”

But others—including two attending board members who are not on the Transportation Committee—worried that bringing the resolution to the full board as-is might fail, in addition to sending a negative message to those who turned out to have their voices heard at the forum.

Steven Brown, co-chair of the Youth, Education and Libraries committee, brought up the portion of residents who felt that there wasn’t enough data. If the committee were to take a position against providing free parking without conducting more research, “it would show the community that we aren’t listening,” warned Brown. “It’s very, very extreme, and I don’t think it’s realistic, and I think you’ll get killed for it,” added non-committee board member Barbara Adler.

“I was disappointed that the forum was composed mostly of one point of view,” said a local resident, who had attended the forum and was unsatisfied by proposals of using curbside space for garbage corrals and public programming. “There was not a lot of information at that meeting, and the idea of dynamic pricing was not backed up by any kind of data whatsoever,” he said.

“Do they represent the majority, or are they a very vocal minority?” committee member Rich Robbins asked about defenders of the current curbside policies that favor free parking. “If we had a complete blank slate, absolutely no way would we design this kooky system.”

Ultimately, the committee voted to take a more neutral stance by amending the language of the resolution. “We are not solving this tonight,” said Yaruss. “We are asking for it to be considered.”

The amendment requests that the city “assess and analyze the policy of providing free parking for private cars,” (as opposed to discontinuing the practice outright), “and consider whether there are more productive and equitable uses of curbside space,” (as opposed to suggesting that all alternative curbside uses are inherently more productive than free parking).

“It’s smart to consider how this will play in front of a wider audience,” noted CB7 Chair Mark Diller, in favor of a stronger effort from the board beyond the community forum. “The closer we get to asking for a study will go a long way.”

NEWS | 76 comments | permalink
    1. Alita says:

      I dont even have a car, but what’s wrong with free parking as it is now?
      My friends and neighbors use cars for work and are stressed out enough as it is, why punish them more?

      • Daniel says:

        If we reduced free parking we could add loading zones to reduce double parking of delivery vans that block travel lanes. We could move garbage collection to curbside containers, getting the mountains of garbage bags off the sidewalk. We could institute permit parking, saving the remaining parking spots for UWS residents overnight. The current free for all doesn’t serve us well.

        • chris says:

          Problem with curbside containers is the noise they make banging on the truck and ground at 3 in the morning. One Lincoln places them (6-8 containers)in the street every night for a 3 am pick up. I live on the 11th floor and it sounds like its in my apartment.

        • CCL says:

          More curbside room for delivery and renovation garbage trucks? OMG. The noise is horrible enough! This is crazy.

        • Doug Garr says:

          You’re dreaming. FedEx, UPS don’t give a rat’s ass about loading zones. They continue to double park in front of my building (despite the removal of two parking spaces for a truck) even when they’re unoccupied by cars with handicapped placards.

        • jeff says:

          That made me laugh. It doesn’t matter how much curb-side space you give commercial vehicles, they will still double and triple park and create congestion. Everyone knows that illegal delivery truck parking goes almost completely unenforced.

          • CAL says:

            I don’t want them to squat in front of my window all day where cars prevent them from doing so now. Double and triple parked, they have to move.

    2. Scott says:

      I wish these people would get their stories straight. One minute they’re for banning all private street parking. Then Yaruss pens an op-ed in the Snooze saying that *metered* parking is the way to go. Well that’s a very different position than a total ban isn’t it.

      Truth is they seem to be making it up as they go along. That’s because there’s no model they can point to as a success story and copy. And notice how they never, ever mention giving preferential treatment to city residents. NYC is the only city I can think of that shafts its own people this way.

      • Ken says:

        This comment is so uninformed that I hesitated even responding to it, but in the interest of accuracy: 1) the committee never called for an end to private parking; it initially called for an end to the provision of *free* parking; 2) far from not mentioning giving city residents preferential treatment, the current resolution cites residential parking permits as one option worth considering; and 3) there are numerous successful models for managing curbside space more rationally — San Francisco, Tokyo, Zurich, Amsterdam . . .the list goes on and on.

    3. Joseph Verhauz says:

      Parking on the street isn’t free. We pay taxes. With congestion pricing on the way, that will squeeze $ from drivers from out of town. I doubt very seriously this comment and it’s facts will bare any weight whatsoever on this discussion. But there you have my 2 cents.

    4. Mark says:

      I believe NYC should institute resident parking permits (for a nominal fee) so only city taxpayers benefit from street parking. If you look at the licenses of many cars on our streets, they bear out of state plates–people who don’t pay most state/local taxes are getting free parking. That doesn’t even count drivers from upstate or Long Island. This issue will get even worse with congestion pricing.

      • Josh P. says:

        A lot of people here share a fantasy that “moderately priced” resident parking permits are the solution to parking issues on the UWS. They always think they should cost what they believe is “reasonable”, which is like $150-200 per year. Where does that number come from? Who knows! But it definitely won’t fix the parking problem.
        The UWS has way more people than it does parking spots. Residential permits would open up some spots, but easier parking would encourage more people in the neighborhood to have cars. Parking would end up being just as annoying now, but now you’d be paying for a permit too.

        • Mark says:

          Hi Josh — Thanks for the thoughtful response and, yes, that’s possible. But instituting residential parking permits does something else–it discourages drivers to commute to the city by car, which is crucial to combat climate change. Those that do drive in would have to find metered parking or use garages. If we don’t do this before congestion parking begins the UWS is going to be overwhelmed with commuters looking to park on our streets to avoid the charge below 60th street.

        • Cato says:

          Another problem with “low cost” resident permits, and one that no one seems to have considered, is the “open the door a crack” problem.

          Once there is a permitting system that creates *some* revenue, some wonk in the City will realize that the system can create *even more* revenue. So, rather than raise the much-complained-about real-estate taxes, or impose some other tax, the City will simply increase the residential parking fee by a couple of dollars. And then a couple more. And so on.

          Ridden a yellow cab lately? What used to be a $5 ride in the neighborhood is now suddenly $12. A surcharge here, a congestion fee there, and the base fare ends up paling next to the add-ons.

          Anyone who advocates for a “reasonably priced” residential permitting system should keep this in mind: Once the City has its hand in your pocket, that hand will dig deeper and deeper and will never come out. “Moderately priced” won’t stay that way for very long — why should it?

    5. John says:

      If they remove free parking charge 20-30 dollars a day and decrease property tax’s so local property owners will benefit

    6. UWS Craig says:

      Free parking benefits should be limited to zero emission vehicles. The city is choked with too many cars that pollute and cause climate damage (Superstorm Sandy the result). Let’s have parking rules that reflect our values – the Upper West Side can be a C02 free neighborhood!

      • Stuart says:

        Craig – the UWS will never be a CO2 free neighborhood, because we all exhale CO2, which is carbon dioxide.

        Also, to compare automobile pollution to damage from Superstorm Sandy is ridiculous. Please provide proof of this absurd notion.

        BTW NYS law mandates that cars must be inspected every year to prevent excessive pollution.

    7. joseph Lichtig says:

      This is horrible. Parking spaces are diminishing and garages are often full. Do they want us to double park in legal areas. Or do they want to promote minicars and motorcycles?

    8. Chrissy says:

      I live on 89th and West End.. Moving here from Boston (Charlestown) I sold my car because I knew that parking here would just be too frustrating. In most areas of Boston, it’s resident parking only and you need to have a sticker on your car. They will also ticket and tow your car there if its not moved for street cleaning.. There are a few non resident spots on each street as well but the bulk of the parking was for residents in that neighborhood only. I was surprised that NY didn’t do the same thing, but I guess there is much less parking per resident here than there is in Boston. I never thought I could live without a car but we have access to so much great transportation here. Our subways are much better here than in Boston too.

    9. Carlos says:

      I think some kind of nominal fee is OK to make spots more available for those who live in the area and to force those who keep their cars registered out of state to register legally in NY. However, we still need a lot of metered spots for those visiting from outside the city.

      Perhaps let those who can provide a W2 from a business in the neighborhood also be able to get resident permits, maybe at a slightly higher rate. This will be helpful for the doormen, teachers, etc. And please don’t say that they should all be taking public transit – this is not a reasonable option from many suburbs, particularly if someone works a non-traditional schedule.

      • Renee says:

        By my estimate, I see about 1 out of 10 cars with out of state plates parked in alternate side spots. Resident parking permits would really help! And furthermore, who keeps a car in this neighborhood if they don’t have to???

    10. MA says:

      I’m an UWS driver who parks in the street, and I support metered parking everywhere. Every free parking spot that I score at the end of a busy day feels like a steal — because it is! We shouldn’t be getting this benefit for free. Both drivers and non-drivers pay property taxes in our neighborhood, but only drivers benefit from the free parking. This isn’t fair. I would be happy to pay a fair price for on-street parking as long as it remains a viable option.

      What’s a “fair price” or a “viable option”? I personally support a floating pricing model for on-street parking. At busy times the price should ratchet up in order to ensure that some proportion of spots remain free at all times. Time limits don’t serve the same purpose, as people simply feed their meters all day long.

      IMHO time limits should be removed entirely, as the floating price will push some people out who parked when the price was lower, but are not willing to pay the higher price that goes into effect at a busier time of the day.

      I sorely wish there were some way to discuss community problems such as parking without mutual animosity, which turns every discussion into a shouting match. UWS is a diverse neighborhood in more ways than one. There are people from all walks of life here. There are hedge fund managers who are happy to pay $1,500 for a garage spot, and there are elderly people who live off a very fixed income. There are regular working people (like myself) whose lifestyle nevertheless doesn’t fit the “commute downtown for a 9-5 job” pattern that seems to be common around here.

      Speaking for myself, I’m raising a young athlete who must travel to practices and competitions in locations which are not served by transit, or at times when transit does not operate. Have you tried bringing your kid to West Nyack, NY for a competition with a 06:30 call time on a weekend? The seemingly obvious solution is ZipCar and/or car rental, but ZipCars are usually booked solid, and rental cars quickly add up to 2x the cost of a car lease+insurance. I simply can’t afford that.

      All this to say that our neighborhood derives its best qualities from *all* the different people who live here. If every person with a non-9-5-commuter lifestyle is removed from our area because their lives are inconvenient to the 9-5 commuters, this will turn into yet another bedroom community. Who wants to be the UES, huh? (Sorry, couldn’t resist…)

      I’m sure we can find an equitable solution. Let’s do the all-day meter thing. We can leave a carveout for residents over 65. Who’s with me?

      • ZB says:

        Is free education a “steal” because both parents and non-parents pay taxes? What an absurd line of reasoning. I don’t believe you park on the street. People who actually do rely on street parking–that is, people like me, who have been priced out of garages–have to take this issue seriously. It sounds like you don’t.

    11. stu says:

      They need to simply do what other cities do. Require a zoned resident permit to park, which would have an annual fee (say between $150-$250). This will (a) generate revenue, through the permits and by forcing residents with out-of-state licenses to register in NY and (b) increase available parking by effectively having non-residents use garages for overnight parking and incentivizing people that never use their cars to give them up (as the cost of registration may not be worth it).

    12. AC says:

      As a 50 yr + resident of the UWS side, I’ve seen and experienced changes that are totally “out there.” I expect changes from generation to generation. And instead of making life easier for residents, visitors, and business owners, it seems like we just create obstacles for such. What’s next? charging residents a fee to walk on sidewalks? (Don’t laugh, never did our parents expect to pay a fee for flying with luggage!)

      • Josh P. says:

        Did you parents ever expect to get free overnight parking on city streets? That wasn’t legalized until the 1950s. Maybe we should go back to those days!

        • Paul says:

          It was legalized in 1950, and among the many things you omit is that along the line the city began to actively discourage the building of garages.
          Assuming that allowing overnight parking is a horrible mistake; well then, if it had not been made there might be a sufficient supply of garages. Instead, if anything, they’re being torn down for more housing.
          And, how many people moved into this neighborhood thinking there’d be parking, vs. how many moved here thinking there’d be no cars?

    13. Viv says:

      This would be truly catastrophic for doormen and other building employees, who comprise the majority of daytime “free parkers” on many UWS blocks—and are unlikely to be in a position to pay astronomical lot fees. Not sure I understand how free parking on public space is “inequitable” ??

      • Josh P. says:

        If residents want to live in a doorman building, then they need to pay their employees a living wage that covers their costs. Why should people in walk ups subsidize doorman buildings costs?

        • Leon says:

          Doormen do earn a living wage. And I am fine bumping the wages of our doormen the cost of a reasonably priced street parking permit. But bumping their wages by the cost of parking in an UWS garage is ridiculous. As is asking them to pay this cost out of pocket.

          You as a non-doorman building resident benefit tremendously from doormen. I generally feel a lot safer walking on streets with doorman buildings than non-doorman buildings – most kids are taught that if someone approaches them, run into a building with a doorman.

          It is truly amazing how self-interested everyone in this city is and how envious those who do not have are of those who do have. This is coming from someone who really does not have that much (though I do have a doorman). I don’t have a car but unlike many others, I don’t want to make life miserable for those who do.

    14. Mark Moore says:

      The UWS has a reputation as a big NIMBY-fest because of a small but very vocal minority of mostly old white people who complain about everything. But there are new bike lanes and Citibike stations everywhere, and the Community Board approved the removal of hundreds more parking spaces for yet another bike lane on Central Park West. The neighborhood is much closer to the cutting edge of land use policy than its reputation would imply.

      • Filatura says:

        I’d like to see your documentation that
        “The UWS has a reputation as a big NIMBY-fest because of a small but very vocal minority of mostly old white people who complain about everything.”
        Please keep your racist,ageist comments to yourself; they add nothing to a reasonable discussion and only make you look pathetic.

    15. Westender says:

      Add me to the list of car-owning street parkers who would embrace paid parking. However, as soon as fees are introduced, the balance of power shifts. If I’m paying for parking, shouldn’t I have a say in when and how often I have to move for street cleaning? And what is the right amount to charge? Any solution will create as many problems as it solves.

      What really frustrates me, though, as noted in some other comments, is how the logic around parking reform isn’t thought out at all. Quoted above, in the same breath: “there are far fewer spaces than people who are hunting for them … and arguably much better uses for the curbside space.” How can we have a *lack* of parking and a need to *eliminate* parking at the same time? I’d love to see how that gets solved.

    16. UWSider With Experience says:

      Per the census, in zip code 10024:

      1.5% of us bike to work.
      6.3% drive.
      Do these drivers clog the streets of Manhattan? No, because 7.3% of us work out of state (and others work in Nassau and Westchester).

      https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF

      So it’s fair to say that the drivers on the UWS use their cars to leave town, not clog it up. Oh, and 1/4 of the cars are used as car pools, so it’s more than the owners who benefit.

      35% of us live in households with cars. About 50% of the households with 2 or more children have cars, and as we all should know, friends of children have been known to hop into the back seats of these cars, so it’s more than the families who own cars who benefit.

      I used to rent summer homes. On the way up and back I used to drive around the city picking up passengers who shared in these rentals. Did they not benefit from car ownership in the City? I don’t wonder if any members of the community board have any memories of such outrageous and selfish activity, because perhaps the most vocal one in this controversy spent some time the passenger seat of my car.

      Who is on the community board and what in their lives qualifies them to make decisions that affect a very large percentage of us in such cavalier way? Are there representative samples of people with children whose activities require transportation? Reverse commuters? People who hop into friends’ cars for lifts to the golf course or beach?

      In the public forum held last month it was 100% clear that the members of this board were dealing with bad data and had been proceeding with ZERO input from people not in lockstep to their views.

      They owe us enough transparency to make it possible for us to understand that this is changing.

    17. Ann Small says:

      Parking in our neighborhood is $1000 per month, which I can’t afford. I need my car for work in NJ.
      No free parking?? Another hit at low and middle income residents. Absurd

    18. ParkInTheLot says:

      Cars should be parked in parking lots. Then the streets would be less congested and traffic would flow better.

      • Deb says:

        Many UWS parking lots and garages were demolished to make way for new residential buildings. The new residents pay big bucks for their apartments, and have no $ left to pay to park their vehicles in the few garages that remain. So where do they park – on the street.

        Btw traffic flowed better before the streets were redesigned for dedicated bus lanes, dedicated bike lanes, wider parking lanes on West End Ave, leaving less lanes for regular car traffic.

      • Bill Williams says:

        Make no mistake, the Transportation Committee of CB7 is radical and many of its members have a conflict of interest. How you can have the chairman of the committee be an active board member of Transportation Alternatives is beyond comprehension. They’re cynically using the coming congestion pricing as a ruse to eliminate parking for alleged higher purposes such as parklets, Loading zones and garbage corrals.

        If Traffic is a concern because of congestion pricing then the answer is not to eliminate spaces. Common sense in fact dictates a moratorium on the elimination of parking and the institution of low or no cost neighborhood parking. Over 20% of cars parked are from non-residents. Traffic is not being caused by UWS residents vehicles! If you want to cut down on that traffic then make it harder for those driving into the neighborhood to park.

        Let’s also dispose of the farcical idea that we need curbside “parklets” for the community. Our neighborhood is bordered with two amazing parks and there are community gardens and other parks up and down the neighborhood from Lincoln Center to Straus Park. In fact visit Straus Park and observe the 3 people that are sitting there at any given time.

        Of course, the needs of hard working New Yorkers who need their cars to commute because they can’t reach their jobs another way or have to visit family members who are unreachable my mass transit are not given the slightest consideration. This is not Europe with a modern transportation infrastructure. It is not Portland or Seattle with municipal garages everywhere.

        This also impacts the Westsiders who can afford this the least. The people who cleaned this neighborhood up, hard working blue collar people and artists who simply cannot afford another cost.

        Drivers pay a lot in taxes from gas to tolls, to sales tax to registration, inspection and licensing fees and UWS drivers use mass transit and ride bikes.

        30% of households have cars, that’s a lot of UWSers. In fact if you took the length of a bike lane and measured the amount of people benefitting from that lane VS the amount of people benefitting from the cars parked along that lane the number of people benefitting from the car parkign would far outweigh those benefiting from the bike lane.

        Moratorium on the elimination of spaces until congestion parking is implemented and a low or no cost Resident Parking plan.

    19. MikeDNYC says:

      I am 73 and retired, a resident of the UWS since 1972. I own a car and park on the street. I use it to get out of the city, go to the beach, to Saratoga, to Upstate New York to visit family and friends, occasionally for camping trips with my family, and for other mini getaways all year round.

      I have a 90-year-old widowed mother-in-law living in Eastern Long Island. She depends on me or my wife to drive there once a week, sometimes more, to do household fixes, and to drive her around grocery shopping or to doctor visits, or to the library, etc.

      I never drive anywhere in the city, except to leave it – and cannot imagine why anyone with a car on the UWS would willfully drive into midtown or lower Manhattan or across town. I take subways (occasionally buses) or Citi Bikes everywhere I go in the city.

      I am not wealthy. You actually might find my income depressing. I get by. I cannot afford to park in a garage or rent cars as frequently as I’d have to or like to use them.

      I think I’m a solid citizen and a good neighbor. To those who want to ban street parking: Am I bothering you? Am I interfering in YOUR life? Like losing the freedom of having a car would interfere with mine? Is my parking on the street really that troubling to you?

    20. Christine E says:

      All parking should be paid parking and at a rate that discourages street parking, given that demand outstrips supply.

      Residential permits seem to favor those who use the spaces the most — and are unfair to several groups that are an important part of the neighborhood — for example, those who work in but don’t live in the neighborhood, and those who occasionally rent a car and do live in the neighborhood (so are just as much a “resident”).

      It is better to meter everywhere as prior posters suggested. If this is managed via an app then perhaps there can be tiered rates, with a discount rate for local residents/employees and a higher standard rate for those who are not “local.”

      • Paul says:

        Our commercial streets are metered. Our residential streets are not.

        There’s a word for this: Normal.

    21. nycityny says:

      This is just another tax grab by the city so it can secure revenue from every possible source. Grocery bags. Driving in midtown. Breathing? That folks so readily accept this tax grab from something that most of the rest of the country takes for granted (free residential street parking) is fascinating, and disturbing.

    22. Nicole says:

      It’s Not FreeParking!! I spend several hours a month trying to find parking spots and waiting on alternate side parking days 3x a week for the time 90 minutes street cleaning to pass each week. I can’t afford to park in my building ($800.00 month) or anywhere else. I drive an economy hybrid car. I rarely drive in the city but I need a care to care for my aging friends outside the city on the weekends.
      This is supposed to be a city for everyone!!! Our parking spots should not continue to go towards Upper class who are the ones needing more vehicles to bring their groceries to their doors, remodel their walk in closets, build more luxury apartments and Uber them around the city. I’m an average NYC citizen scraping to keep my residence in this city that is becoming more and more a place for only wealthy people. So sad!! You have the power to stop looking the other way!

    23. your_neighbor says:

      I have a car. Park it just across the bridge in Queens and when I need it park it on an UWS street 1,2,3,4 times a month.
      Parking in Queens is about $200 a month.

      I’d gladly pay $100 a month for a resident parking permit so I don’t have to cruise the streets for an hour the few times a month I have to park in my neighborhood. If you have to travel out of the city or state to a job that doesn’t pay enough to be able to spend $3 to $4 a day for parking you should really reconsider what you do for a living.

      This talk of $100 or $150 a year is nonsense – it gives the people who basically just move their cars from one side of the street to another no incentive to even think about giving up their car. One person pointed out that parking is $1000 a month – gotta say I haven’t seen that unless that person drives a $200k luxury or sports car for which many garages charge extra. Another said $800 a month which is more in line with the $650-$750 I have seen around the neighborhood. Makes $100 a month seem almost like stealing.

    24. Tag Gross says:

      Dear fellow UWS vehicle owners. Please join us. We are a group of UWS residents that have formed to combat the out of step ideas of CB7’s Transportation Committee and the agenda being pushed by the well funded lobbying group Transportation Alternatives. There is a complete disconnect about how, where and when we use our cars and the extreme negative economic impact that this will have on our most vulnerable neighbors.

      There are common sense solutions that can be implemented immediately. We suggest an immediate moratorium on the reduction of spaces until the impact of congestion pricing can be evaluated and a low or no cost residential parking permit plan can be implemented. We need to organize!

      Join us at these links:

      http://www.commonsensestreets.org
      commonsensestreets@gmail.com

    25. Stan C says:

      I need my car to go to do all I have to do from babysitting chores to busing my mom in her assisted living facility. Not to mention business meetings outside the city. I cannot afford parking fees on the UWS and there are few garages and they charge too much. So if you change the rules about parking you must give us a pass to park in garages, which you cannot do.

    26. Bruce says:

      How many of the committee members own a car? How many of them currently park on the street?
      The delivery spots added to West End Avenue are never used and remove more potential parking spaces from the area. What is their expectation ? To meter the entire city?

      • Juan says:

        I am not a huge fan of those spots but I am pretty sure they are only reserved for deliveries during the day, so they do free up overnight (I believe at 6).

      • Tag Gross says:

        Bruce:

        The Chairman of the Transportation Committee of CB7 owns a car and garages it. He is also a board member of Transportation Alternatives, a group with the stated purpose of “Transportation Alternatives’ mission is to reclaim New York City’s streets from the automobile”. More than one memembr of the committee belongs to this group as well.

        Please join our group, spread the word and help stop this:
        http://www.commonsensestreets.org

    27. Isabella says:

      Don’t shut out working people who need to park their vehicles on the street.

      I’m amazed at how one-sided this has become.

      Finalizing the point of view that NYC is the playground of the rich and famous – and no one else.

    28. NBH says:

      As an UWS-er [40+ years] who drives to work in Queens [public transport would be 3 trains and a bus], I would not be be unwilling to be a reasonable annual fee for resident street parking. This would be an approach taken by many suburban communities. I do, however, already pay plenty in real estate taxes on my apartment [more than trebled since Bloomberg became mayor].

    29. Barbara says:

      As soon as CB7 begins to regulate bicycles we can discuss other matters. The city has created miles of bike lanes FREE bike lanes with tax payer dollars. I do not bike so why are my taxes subsidizing bike lanes?
      What’s even more egregious is that many bikers are clueless or simply do not care about pedestrians.
      So .. bicyclists should be mandated to take a safety course and be licensed.
      Then we can talk about parking spots

    30. Stef Lev says:

      These so-called advocates are elitist. They don’t care how many residents of CB7 are inconvenienced, nor do they care about anyone else’s welfare, there than the bike riders they support. Bike riders are smaller in number than pedestrians and car owners in CB7, but none of this matters.

    31. Emily Goodman says:

      In addition to resident car owners most buildings employ staff who drive to work from Staten Island, Rockland
      County, New Jersey. They may work difficult hours, lack public transportation and be forced to leave their jobs, relationships, seniority because they cannot park their vehicles. Where is the union, 32BJ?
      Emily J Goodman

    32. M Shamah says:

      The city Licensed over 50,000 additional ” taxis”,
      got rid of lane after lane for these few bikes, most that are motorized and most that violate all traffic laws,often causing fatal and non fatal injuries to both rider and pedestrian.
      The city is allowing nearly unlimited construction of Manhattan housing-did anybody ever contemplate the traffic burden from these tens of thousands of new residents?

      and you have the gall to tell us anything about the congested city traffic and to charge the super taxed residents to park????

    33. the epearl says:

      What would George Costanza say?!

    34. Sara says:

      I don’t have a car either but My children with my three grand children in the car come for the holidays and need to park after an eight hour drive from out of state for a few days. I am frantic at the thought that soon there may not be any parking around here. There are so few spaces as it is that it often takes two hours to find one. Many many people have legitimate reasons for needing our parking as it is. Suddenly Howard Yaruss And A so called community board has the power to make our neighborhood unlivable: gerbage containers sitting permanently on our streets, noisy public events??? Are you kidding. Soon they will charge us for walking on « free ». sidewalks. Maybe Mr Yaruss and his cohorts will be working on that.
      Parking spots are being ripped away By bureaucrats in city hall with your support it seams, but we have no say. Don’t give more reasons for people to leave our beloved city.
      Mr Yaruss and whoever else. You want to be on a crusade -stop hurting us. Stop trying to hurt my family. Do something really good for the city. Work on the homeless problem. Stop developers from chasing out Mom and Pop stores little businesses and putting up ugly buildings more than 15 stories, work to get more buses running on Broadway, Amsterdam and Columbus, work to get elevators and escalators at all subway stops (since you are so fixated on transportation issues), work on getting the streets paved that have been ripped up forever so that handicapped people like myself can get around without falling. I’m sure you can insert yourself in all kinds of community boards.
      How do we find out about these forums? Your meetings amount to secret meetings where some people get to go by chance. A notice should be sent to every apartment on every street that you wish to deprive of « free «  parking of these meetings.

    35. jeff says:

      “Free parking” is a misnomer. On major avenues like Broadway, Amsterdam, Columbus, etc. all parking is metered. One could make the argument that side street parking isn’t free either as resident car-owners pay all kinds of fees and taxes. In re: the comment from board member Rich Robbins (a personal friend) I would suggest that the very vocal minority consists of folks who want to radically change the current system and essentially do away with all car ownership. Obviously folks who have cars have a large stake in the parking policy. Just as obviously, the vast majority of those who don’t own cars are in no way affected by parking policy and, therefore, don’t have a dog (or vehicle) in this fight.

      Finally, as a broader perspective on parking policy, it is disingenuous for anti-car folks to harangue car owners in the city for creating congestion when anyone with a pair of eyes knows that the congestion is caused by trucks and commercial vehicles. Now that Amsterdam Avenue has bike lanes, it is common to see delivery trucks literally triple parked, creating only a single lane for traffic on a 5 or 6 lane avenue. And there is also the issue of a congested and failing mass transit system. It makes no sense to tell people to stop using cars when mass transit is so completely unreliable. Fix mass transit first and then maybe people will be moved to use it more often.

    36. DrM says:

      Data schmata. Here’s the data: Space of any kind in NYC costs money. A LOT of money. You want free parking? Move to the ‘burbs and enjoy your private 2.5 car garage. Attached to your 3 bedroom 2.5 bath house that costs less than your studio apartment. OR, be thankful you’ve worked the system this long and suck it up. “A very vocal [and privileged] minority” indeed.

      • Paul says:

        Was this community car free when you moved in, so that some people ruined it for you?

        Why don’t you move to a car free community?

        PS: the curb space doesn’t belong to anyone. It’s there for people who use it, same as the library, the park, or a school.

        And you — or anyone you know — might wake up tomorrow to the news that a parent in an outer borough or suburb has an illness and needs you to come out a few times a week and guess what? You might become one of the people who needs and uses the curb space for a car.

    37. Frank says:

      We visit the UWS for multiple days several times per year obviously because we love it. Since I no longer live near a train station and due to the rail cost we often drive. With that being said when we arrive we spend money on accommodations, meals and events. One of the most cost effective ways of getting there has been the free parking and without it our stays would be reduced. I don’t think we’re alone with concern for this potential transportation cost increase because the price of parking garages is often unaffordable. I hope free parking doesn’t disappear

    38. Friendly UWS neighbor says:

      Rent in NYC is expensive. I for one can’t afford to park my car in a garage which costs double my lease. I also have a job, which means finding parking is difficult enough, I am not anywhere near my car to feed a meter during the day.

      By removing parking along CPW South of the Museum of Natural History, the city has already made alt. Side parking extremely difficult and caused a large amount of anger and road rage during parking times. I rarely see people biking in the new CPW bike lane, but what I am seeing more and more frequently are arguments breaking out amongst people trying to find parking spots during the week. We want our community to be a neighborly community, not individuals fighting tooth or nail over smaller and smaller amounts of parking spaces. The UWS can’t handle losing any more parking to citi bikes, bike lanes, meters, or otherwise! What we need are more parking options. As another commenter noted meters aren’t going to prevent commercial vehicles from double parking and holding up traffic, but free parking is a huge boon to those who live in the community!

      • CCL says:

        Now that bleachers have gone up, bikes, people, dogs, trucks are all colliding into each other along the new “bike lane” on CPW. It’s a disaster waiting to happen.

    39. Gretchen says:

      It seems to me that an advisory board such as CB7 has no legal right to decide major traffic and parking changes for an entire area, that could negatively impact thousands of residents and others. It is illogical. This is a major alteration and should only be approved or disapproved by elected officials and DOT – not a motley crew of unauthorized, unelected, opinionated and often ill-informed bunch of community appointees. Furthermore, any significant changes should be brought before the entire district in a full public setting, so residents know exactly what is being proposed and the public could ask questions and express their concerns and issues. Otherwise, this is an illegitimate usurping of residents rights.

    40. CCL says:

      NYTimes story about this today. They’ve been reading West Side Rag. Now. They have to take up the scaffolding issue.