Atlantic Yards-Area Residents Get Hearing on Residential Parking Permits

After years of calls for protected spaces, City Council to hear public testimony on proposed change Wednesday morning.

Residential permit parking may soon be coming to Brooklyn and the rest of the city, if area civic groups and elected officials can garner enough support.

Concerned about the threat of traffic and a shortage of parking once the 18,000-seat Barclays Center opens next fall, Councilmembers Letitia James (Prospect Heights/Fort Greene) and Steve Levin (Park Slope/Boerum Hill) are holding a hearing tomorrow morning on state legislation that would allow the Department of Sanitation to grant permits across the city to neighborhoods that make a case for them.

Car owners across the city have long called for the permits to give them protection from commuters who park in their neighborhoods and take the train for the final leg of their trip to work. Other cities, including Chicago and Boston, already issue the permits.

“Permit parking is long overdue in Downtown Brooklyn, Western Queens, Upper Manhattan and other communities where residents must circle for hours trying to find parking near their homes,” state Sen. Daniel Squadron, who is co-sponsoring the legislation with another Brooklyn Democrat, Assemblywoman Joan Millman, told the New York Post.

Residents would pay an undetermined fee for the permits, and 20 percent of the spaces in the permit zones would be open to nonresidents for short-term parking. The permits would not apply to commercial strips, according to the Post.

The Barclays Center, which is scheduled to open in September 2012, will attract “as many as 5,600 cars” from visitors who drive to the arena, according to the Empire State Development Corporation.

"If nothing is done before to mitigate this volume of traffic, there will be an increased risk of vehicular, pedestrian and bicycle accidents that already make Atlantic Avenue Brooklyn's most dangerous road," said Councilwoman James in a news release.

According to James, the ESDC expects 3,000 arena patrons to take up parking spaces in the neighborhoods during the more than 200 expected events each year. James argues that with residential permit parking, not only will residents have easier access to parking spots, but visitors will be dissuaded from driving to the arena, instead taking public transportation.

The Post reports that Mayor Bloomberg declined to comment on the bill, though he had previously backed residential permit parking as part of his failed 2008 congestion-pricing plan.

The hearing will take place Wednesday, Nov. 2, at 10:30 a.m. at 250 Broadway, 14th floor, in Manhattan, and the public is welcome. An online petition has been circulating, as well.

Grand Army November 02, 2011 at 02:47 PM
On a purely practical level, RPP is going to be essential for any Prospect Heights car owner who wants to continue parking on the street. Unlike j.b., it seems completely fair to me that local residents should be privileged over park-and-ride commuters or people coming to arena events who aren't willing to pay for private parking. I have friends who live in Chicago near Wrigley Field who say that w/o RPP they'd have to spend hundreds of dollars a month for parking. There will be a big fight over this -- largely orchestrated by politicians from more distant neighborhoods. Remember too that basketball games are only the tip of the iceberg. It's expected that there will be events at the arena 7 days a week, sometimes two events per day.
I pay taxes November 02, 2011 at 02:51 PM
I do not own a car and my tax dollars go to subsidize your use of a public space to store your private property. That is what is unfair. Parks have a social benefit, even when "I" am not using it. There is no social benefit to me subsidizing "your" parking space. The pain of cars is not inflicted evenly. It's inflicted disproportionately on those WITHOUT cars, since all that street parking takes up valuable public space that could be put towards wider sidewalks, small gathering spaces, better bus stops, loading zones, & more. A parking space benefits only one person at a time, often for weeks on end, give or take a few alternate side parking days. Residential parking permits ensure that those who park their private vehicles on public property pay for the privilege. Even if the permit is free, at least you can require that cars be registered in NY, unlike so many of the drivers who cheat our local government and communities out of tax revenue by keeping their cars registered in Florida or in other states with minimal insurance requirements. A parking space is not anything like a sidewalk, park, or even a street. Those belong to the many, who can benefit from them at once. A parking space "belongs" to the few, if not the one. If we're not going to force drivers to pay market rates for the real estate they are taking up, the very least we can do is ask that they pay a meager license and registration fee to the state in which they store their vehicle.
Joe Gonzalez November 02, 2011 at 03:33 PM
Any discussion of residential parking permits must include a conversation of why local Houses of Worship (HOW) have posted signs that contain a permenant 24/7 ban on any parking out in front of their HOW. An example of this is in Clinton Hill on the north side of Lafayette Avenue Between Washington Avenue and St. James Place. There are two HOW on that street but I aver that the issue is local residents are denied parking on that block 24/7. I ask The Patch to count up the number of parking spaces that are NOT available to locals oweing to this seemingly untoward perk. One might argue for a limited ban during Sabbath day services--but even that is a reach considering most HOW attendees reside within walking distance. I want these signs removed & those parking spaces freed up for local residents to park.
Michael Brown November 03, 2011 at 04:12 AM
That guy, above me = genius
Nancy Carpenter November 23, 2011 at 05:58 PM
I realize that this discussion may already be over with but I just want to point out that Section 7-210 of the New York City Administrative Code, passed in September 2007, made homeowners now responsible for the maintenance and repair and liability of the sidewalks adjacent to their property. Therefore, sidewalks are now "private property" and no longer "public domain." The City currently only owns approximately 1% of sidewalks. Homeowners were required to take out additional insurance and were issued violations requiring them to make any necessary repairs at their own cost. Taxpayers (of all kinds - owners, renters, bicyclists) no longer pay for the maintenance of the majority of sidewalks or for the lawsuits resulting from slip and falls, etc. Just FYI


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