Parking is getting more and more difficult in Brooklyn, making neighbors lament and scrutinize every rule and restriction.
Should yellow school buses be allowed to take up street parking overnight?
What about livery cars taking up every last spot?
Or film shoots? — one of which was recently kicked out of parking spots after neighbors complained.
Should teachers have dedicated parking by schools? What about firemen by the fire stations?
Can auto repair shops and dealers use public parking spots for storing their inventory? What about car washes?
Remember the fake ‘No Parking’ signs construction companies put up in Cobble Hill? The list goes on.
Southern Brooklyn Councilman Chaim Deutsch is drafting legislation that hopes to clarify one of those rules — when can you park around schools?
Most schools, both public and private, have restricted parking spots surrounding them that indicate, “No Parking School Days.”
This essentially restricts parking during business hours as it is close to impossible to figure out when a particular school is not in session. AS far as we could find, there is no definition for what a “School Day” is. Here is what the NYC website says:
“Parking is allowed in school zones when school is in recess. However, motorists should be aware that specific schools may be open on holidays and during summer vacations, and parking restrictions would remain in effect. If schools have summer sessions or are open for teacher meetings or similar activities, even if students are not attending, the parking regulations apply on such days. Individuals should contact specific schools to verify that they are in recess.”
Right. Call the school. However, most schools do not have an active summer office and 311 operators will tell a caller that this information is not available to them, according to Deutsch. If no one answers the phone, are you safe to assume the school is closed and you will not get a ticket? Unlikely.
Deutsch’s legislation would require the information to be available online, to 311 operators, and to NYPD traffic agents.
“Parking is a constant struggle in New York City and every spot matters,” said Deutsch. “This simple clarification to the rules surrounding each school’s parking regulations will make it easier for drivers to park without worrying about receiving an expensive summons. This bill is another step forward in my ongoing effort to enhance the quality of life of my constituents and all New Yorkers. ”
While I agree with the Councilman that clarifying the rules would go a long way, the proposed solution sounds costly and cumbersome. There are over 1,800 public schools in the city, each presumingly with a separate schedule, in addition to private schools, and parochial schools, which observe yet another set of holidays.
Would it not be a lot simpler to just say impose a no parking between 7am-4pm (or even 5pm) on weekdays and leave it at that? What do you think?