Proposed Council Bill to Increase Penalties for Sidewalk Parking in Manufacturing Districts

Sidewalk parking in manufacturing districts, as seen here, is the target of a proposed City Council bill. Image Credit: Google Maps.

New penalties will range from $500 to $1,000. On February 2, 2023, Council Member Alexa Avilés introduced bill number 0900-2023 in the NYC Council. The bill proposes to increase penalties for illegal sidewalk parking by covered businesses in certain manufacturing (M1) zoning districts and arranged for bollards to be installed within selected areas of these zoning districts.

Under the proposed bill, covered businesses include all commercial, manufacturing, or industrial establishments. If a body shop owner parks a customer’s vehicle on the sidewalk, the bill proposes to fine the body shop owner and not the vehicle owner.

The proposed bill would impose penalties on violators in the following amounts: $150 for first violations, $500 for second violations, and $1,000 for any further violations within the year. Additional violations would be given for every day a violation occurs. If a motor vehicle is parked on a sidewalk for a week, seven separate violations would be issued for that one motor vehicle.

Covered businesses will be alerted of the enhanced penalties for sidewalk parking violations once the bill is passed. An annual report would be posted on the Department of Transportation’s website detailing the dates and places of violations, the penalty charged for each violation and each violator’s name and address. Transportation would also complete a study detailing recommended sidewalks for the installation of bollards, the rationale behind each recommendation and the plan for the installation. Within 90 days of completing the study, bollards would need to be installed.

CityLand reached out to Council Member Avilés’s office, Brooklyn Community Board 7, and Brooklyn Community Board 10 who all expressed that illegal sidewalk parking is a prevalent issue within their communities and is a top public safety concern affecting pedestrians accessing the sidewalks.

According to Council Member Avilés’s office, numerous residents living near manufacturing districts complained about issues relating to illegal sidewalk parking. The complaints included: blocked access to sidewalks, a lack of parking spots, and decreased sanitation work which led to an increase in rats. Council Member Alexa Avilés’s Communications and Organizing Manager, James Neimeister told CityLand that mothers walking in manufacturing zones complained about haphazardly parked motor vehicles on sidewalks which forced them to walk into the street with their strollers.

Brooklyn Community Board 10 District Manager Josephine Beckmann stated, “Pedestrian traffic within the M1-1 Zone has significantly increased over the last decade with new schools constructed, new restaurants and residential units nearby. The M1-1 Zones were once an area with little to no pedestrian traffic on sidewalks… and that has definitely changed.”

Brooklyn Community Board 7 District Manager Jeremy Laufer stated, “Illegal Sidewalk parking is a public safety issue that needs to be addressed as parking and traffic safety (particular for pedestrians and bike riders) has long been an issue for us, without adequate enforcement.”

CityLand addressed the enforcement issue with Council Member Aviles’ office. James Neimeister acknowledged that “Illegal sidewalk parking is rarely enforced and rarely ticketed.”  He expressed that the Council Member is taking the issue of illegal sidewalk parking very seriously and hopes that with the passing of this legislation, law enforcement agencies, like the NYPD, would be encouraged to enforce illegal sidewalk parking more heavily.

Introduction  0900-2023 was referred to the City Council Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. The Committee has not yet scheduled a public hearing on this bill.

By: Malka Amar (Malka is a New York Law School student, Class of 2023.)

CC: Stated Meeting, Int. 0900-2023 (February 2, 2023).


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.