City to Designate Ten Parking Spots in the Heights to Rideshare Vehicles

Oh boy, this is bound to incite a rousing debate. WPIX reports that the City has chosen 14 neighborhoods for its two-year pilot program to designate certain parking spots to rideshare companies such as Zipcar. Park Slope and Cobble Hill/Carroll Gardens will have to relinquish 30 spots each. Boerum Hill will have to do without 20, and Brooklyn Heights and Red Hook, 10 each.

Photo credit: By Herzi Pinki (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.

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  • Banet

    Couldn’t agree more. I used to live in a city that had residential parking permits. It generally worked well. They didn’t cost too much but they ensured you registered your car locally. It was 2 hour parking M to F, 8 to 6 or some such.

    The only flaw was that the city was divided into zones. That way you couldn’t commute from your part of the city and clog up residential parking elsewhere for 9 hours while you worked. That makes sense. Except for when you want to park in another neighborhood for 3 or 4 hours midweek for some odd reason. But I’m sure that could be worked out.

  • KBells40

    Yes, the garage on Joralemon/Henry is for residents only (and agreed, I suspect the same is true for the one on Willow).

  • Love Laner

    I find this arrangement a little odd. Neither I nor my family are car users, instead we take the subway or use uber/taxis. Zipcar is only for trips to storage, maybe once a year. Do that many people use Zipcar on a daily basis? Or even weekly? What transportation issue is this solving? It seems out of left field to me, but maybe that’s because I’m not a car owner or a frequent Zipcar customer.

  • Arch Stanton

    “The original claim that 60% isn’t a “vast” majority is reasonable enough” That’s it.

  • Arch Stanton

    Yes, and the street are not growing.

  • Arch Stanton

    Strollers too.

  • Arch Stanton

    Indeed there is an influx of weekday parkers, mostly from people working in the area, which is significant. On street parking options are even bleaker east of Court Street so they come here.

  • Arch Stanton

    It doesn’t matter if the placards are fake, there are enough real ones to affect parking here.

  • Arch Stanton

    Yes you can say 60% is “Most” but what does that mean, the remaining 40% have no rights at all? This is the reason we have the current nightmare in Washington. The majority (even if slight) claims “it’s our way or no way”…

  • Arch Stanton

    Using your methodology: I did an inventory of friends who live in the area; I come up with slightly less than half who own cars (fits the stats) and most of them park on the street. So I doubt your “10%” calculation to be accurate.
    Also the assumption that reducing parking spaces somehow benefits everyone who doesn’t own a car is ludicrous.

  • Reggie

    Remember the neologism: carshare. You use Zipcar once a year and don’t own a car. Some folks own cars, use them more often than you but not often enough to really merit owning one. The idea is, if carshare vehicles are more readily available, then some of the people who don’t really need a car will get rid of theirs, freeing up parking for those who use their vehicles more frequently. All the infrequent users will share a car owned by Zipcar or a competitor.

  • Banet

    I’ve never used one but off the top of my head I could imagine using car share for trips to storage, Ikea, a day of apple picking, a day at the beach, an outing to some off-subway culinary destination such as City Point or City Island, helping a friend move, picking up a Craigslist purchase, visiting an outer borough elderly relative… granted a lot of these would need a more substantial car than the little Smart cars I see around the neighborhood.

  • Banet

    I went through the exact same exercise. That’s how I got to my 10%. (I know many neighbors with no car. I also know many neighbors who own a car… but they ALL park in a garage save maybe one at most.) Clearly we don’t know the same people.

    I never argued that simply reducing the number of available spaces benefit those who do not own cars. I’m not advocating for simply turning parking spaces into vacuum. But when you convert those parking spaces into a shared resource such a Citibike rack or parking for share vehicles it’s definitely a situation where everybody wins, whether you own a car or not.

    In terms of street parking being paid for by “gas taxes, tolls, etc” that argument doesn’t make sense. Zero dollars of toll money goes to street maintenance. It goes to bridge upkeep or other Port Authority projects like airports and container ports. Gas taxes are the same statewide. What extra tax do you pay at NYC gas stations that’s considered a user fee for on-street parking? Can I get that fee waived if I show a monthly bill from my off-street garage?

    Finally, while street parking has been low or no-cost in many places, it’s not universal. You’re flat out wrong about that. Washington DC has had residential parking permits for more than 25 years. So does Philadelphia. And San Francisco. And Cambridge, MA. And Pittsburgh. And Boston. And Chicago. And Seattle. And Portland. And every city I googled. The fees are minor — between $25 and $100 per year — but even the act of requiring a permit would cut down on street parking in our neighborhood as all of those that illegally register their car out of state would be forced to register here and therefore pay the much higher Brooklyn insurance rates.

    And even if no other city did charge a fee, things are changing. Fewer people are interested in driving. NYC is more crowded than its ever been. Literally. Not evolving our car practices as things change makes us dinosaurs — headed for extinction.

  • Arch Stanton

    I don’t have an issue with Citibike (I am a founding member) or creating some shared vehicle spots. I am simply tired of being demonized as a car owner.

    Realistically, it dosen’t matter what the taxes and tolls are individually earmarked for, it all ultimatly goes towards paying for everything in the city and state budgets. But if you really want to nitpick, the MTA bridge and tunnel tolls subsidize mass transit. So, should I get a discount on my Metrocard if I show my EzPass statement?

    I didn’t say on street parking was “free everywhere”, just that the concept of parking cars by the side of the road is a universally accepted practice and it is mostly free. My issue is with the ridiculous theory that taking these spaces back and somehow repurposing them (for uses other than vehicle parking) will somehow benefit humanity.

    I have no issue with having resident parking permits for a nominal fee, in fact I would welcome it.

  • Arch Stanton

    “Some folks own cars, use them more often than you but not often enough to really merit owning one”, “people who don’t really need a car”
    That judgmental attitude is the crux of my irritation. Who are you or anyone to judge who has a “legitimate” reason for owning a car?

  • DIBS

    I own three cars, Reggie. Whaddaya think about that????

  • Reggie

    I didn’t mean it as a value judgment. I meant it as a calculation that every car owner (myself included) makes regarding the cost and the hassle versus the utility. Touchy on this subject?

  • Reggie

    I think that sounds consistent with how you have presented yourself online for the past decade. I’d bet one or more of them is a pretty nice ride too.

  • AbeLincoln

    This makes sense. There are never available parking spots on weekday days.

  • MaggieO

    ah yes, let’s blame the low-wage immigrants. nevermind the data showing car-owning households in Brooklyn have a higher median income than non-car-owning households.

  • Arch Stanton

    Got something against people who wash dishes for a living?

  • Arch Stanton

    And all the transient parkers: shopping, doctors appointments, lawyer visits, government office dealings, etc…

  • Banet

    I’d argue that Sunset Park has far more cars in it because it’s been gentrifying, both residentially and with white collar jobs (as in ALL of Industry City). These, for the most part, are not recent immigrants but overwhelmingly people who were born and raised in the U.S.

    Car ownership is NOT a function of immigration. It’s a function of relative *wealth*.

  • Love Laner

    Definitely they would be a good resource for day trips, which I’d never really thought to use them for. I agree the size of cars would make storage trips/moving/furniture acquisition difficult but would work for smaller items at least. I guess I just wonder if BK Heights is dense enough to justify these spaces in addition to the current pick up points in the area (I think there are 2-3 garages that have them), but once they’re installed we’ll see how often the spaces are empty, as an indication that someone has rented the vehicle.

  • Banet

    “…but once they’re installed we’ll see how often the spaces are empty, as an indication that someone has rented the vehicle.”

    I’m not sure how to interpret regularly empty (or full) spaces.

    If we see lots of empty spaces, does that mean people are constant taking the cars out? Or does it mean that people just don’t return the cars to the space they got them from? Will people use them for 1 way trips the way they do Citibike?

    If the spaces are frequently full does that mean no one is using the cars? Or just that Brooklyn Heights is a popular destination for people using these cars? Or they’re being used for a variety of shorter round trips but say… four 1 hour trips a day.

    That means the space will be empty 4 hours, but full 20 hours. I think that would be a smash success… but may be perceived as the cars rotting in place.

    I’m all for curbside parking being dedicated to this use but it would be nice if there were some metrics for success that were shared with the community in advance and after a set period.

  • Greg Bukovatz

    If you don’t live in an area with enough parking, and need to move, give us a call – – We are a Brooklyn moving company.

  • Brixtony

    Here we go again. Johnny One Note, aka One Man Banned, is back with his xenophobic rantings. Sad and soooo predictable.

  • Arch Stanton

    You tout “facts” yet fail to post any credible links to support thesis.
    “car companies having plans to transition away from porduction of cars for individual ownership”
    Are you trying to take crackpot conspiracy theory to a new level, Jeffery?

  • Moni

    Typical Arch. Blah, blah, blah, I’m right, blah, blah.

  • Jeffrey Smith

    EVERYTHING is a “crack pot theory” to certain elements when they don’t want one of thier advocacy or beliefs challenged or examined in the light of day. Or, like the casino crowd, they (like you) want to be only voice heard in the Heights…..