Last Updated on March 26, 2016 by Lawrence Berezin
To double park or not to double park in NYC, that is the question
r so? What would happen if Mom said you can come home at 1 a.m., and Dad said, you must be home by 11 p.m.? The results would be confusion, anger, a fight, and unjust punishment.
The NYC DOT explicitly, clearly and unequivocally states on its Website,
“Double parking of passenger vehicles is illegal at all times, including Alternate Side Parking Regulation days, regardless of location, purpose or duration”
So, there you go. That resolves any question about double parking, right? WRONG. The NYC DOF, Adjudication Division states in, Your Guide to Parking Ticket Hearings, on page 10 and page 14 that it is absolutely, positively legal to double park while stopped temporarily to discharge and pick up passengers (outside Midtown, or, in Midtown prior to 7 a.m. and after 7 p.m.)
My humble opinion about double parking in NYC
It is perfectly legal to double park your vehicle (note Midtown exception) when you stop temporarily to drop off or pick up a passenger. Here’s why. Double parking is defined in VC 46 as:
“Standing or parking on the roadway side of a vehicle stopped, standing or parked at the curb…”
Double parking is an NO STANDING violation. The NYC parking rules permit the driving public to stop temporarily to pick up or discharge passengers in NO STANDING zones. This defense is even set forth in a chart on the NYC DOT website.
There is nothing in the plain language of the rule that makes double parking different than a prohibition against standing or parking in a certain location. The location being on the roadway side of a vehicle stopped, standing or parked at the curb.
NYC DOT vs. NYC DOF
DOT says NO to double parking; while the DOF says YES. This example of “bad parenting” leads to confusion, anger, fighting and unfair consequences.
Councilman David Greenfield states he will sponsor legislation to clean up this mess. His proposed bill will be to allow double parking when you “stop temporarily to pick up or discharge passengers.” It can’t happen soon enough.
I suggest NOT to double park, until stopping temporarily to pick up or drop off a passenger is universally recognized as a defense. The big but is, if you receive a parking ticket for double parking, and feel strong that a parking ticket should NOT be issued to penalize you for a rule that is being enforced improperly, fight the ticket!
When you fight your parking ticket, I urge you to include a reference to the DOT’s own Guide to Parking Ticket Hearings. The Guide states on page 10 and 14, it is legal to double park when you stop, drop and go, or stop, pick up and go. If Dad says it’s perfectly o.k. to come home at 1 a.m., how can he justify a penalty if you follow his rule? He can’t!
Have you been issued a parking ticket for double parking while stopped temporarily to drop off or pick up a passenger? What did you do next? Please share your experience. It means a lot to all of us.