SHEEPSHEAD BAY – In a local Sheepshead Facebook group, a conversation about double parking is boiling over. The tipping point? A long rant in the group about parents double parking and then abandoning their cars near PS 52. In particular, double parking along both sides of Nostrand Avenue, with no regard for those they park in, sometimes allegedly abandoning their cars for close to half an hour.
While some called parents picking kids up from school and parking neighbors in “rude,” “obnoxious” and “bastards”, there were more level-headed neighbors suggesting that better solutions can probably be found by bringing the issues up at a community board meeting.
Outside just about every school in Brooklyn at dismissal there will be cars double parked waiting to pick up kids. Often there will also be double parked school buses waiting to pick up kids. Have you seen 18th Avenue before dismissal? Or Stillwell and Avenue P at drop off or dismissal? Congestion this creates can be significant, especially during rush hour.
Double parking is more common outside elementary schools, which don’t let kids walk home by themselves, and require them to be picked up in person. That means – many double parked and abandoned vehicles.
Having lived across an elementary school for over a decade now, I’d argue that while [occasionally incredibly] annoying, the double parking by schools is also incredibly predictable and short in duration. Thus – not hard to avoid being parked in if you live there, though most frustrating if you forget and have to leave during that half hour. And yes, fire trucks and ambulances will not be able to get by, but they seem to know it, and very occasionally the emergency is actually on the block. And yes, delivery trucks will get stuck.
Though it is technically illegal to leave your car double parked and unattended, it is most common. You see it all the time on commercial strips. (Ever tried going down Flatbush on a Saturday? Or anytime really). Commercial strips are also the only places where you will see the city occasionally enforcing the rules.
A tip to the southern Brooklynites driving up north – you can easily be parked in for three hours straight during street cleaning if you are not careful in places like Park Slope, Fort Greene, and increasingly Ditmas Park and Kensington. No amount of honking will help.
Parking is getting so scarce, that everyone just double parks, and while the city could rake in the fines, it seems it has decided it is not worth it. The polite thing would be to leave your number on the dash, though I’ve only ever seen a few folks do it in my decade-plus in this borough.