Merchants talk about parking rules changes and NYC listened
How about this for a mail carrier bites dog story? Local merchants in South Queens urged NYC to change some of the parking rules on Queens Boulevard. Their complaints centered around promoting Queens Boulevard as a shopping destination, rather than a thoroughfare for out-of-borough commuters traveling between Manhattan and Long Island:
- Eliminate the current No parking rule between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m.
- Reducing the meter limits from 12-hour parking spaces to 4-hour spaces under the 7-train tracks
State Senator Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) expressed the underlying reason for the rule changes:
“There’s nothing more frustrating for those of us who live in Queens to see the city’s rules operate to service people who are traveling between Long Island and Manhattan and not serving the people in between.”
How’d they do it?
“Gianaris, as well as City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) and Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-Queens/Bronx), wrote to the Department of Transportation asking the agency to allow parking on Queens Blvd. after 8 a.m.
The current no-parking rules are in place to facilitate rush-hour traffic, an agency spokeswoman said.
But the restriction kills morning business, merchants said, especially from 39th to 49th Streets where they are proposing the changes.
“It’s very frustrating. This is costing us,” said Ciaran Staunton, 48, who opened Molly Blooms in March, a pub that also serves breakfast.
“All my customers have nowhere to park,” added Philip Valenti, owner of the health store Go Natural. “I’m a local merchant and I’ve made an investment in the area. The city is supposed to help us,” said Valenti, 65.
The rush-hour traffic slows down after 8 a.m, making the parking restrictions unnecessary, merchants said.
Bravo to local merchants to take action to change parking rules that were a barrier to business. Should local businesses and residents of the borough be granted “favored status” over commuters? Aren’t all NYC residents, regardless of the borough in which they live, deserve to be treated equally?
What do you think?
Have you read about this parking scam in Queens? Do you want to?