"UNCIVIL SERVANTS," NEW STUDY OF ILLEGAL SIDEWALK PARKING IN CHINATOWN TO BE RELEASED AT A PRESS CONFERENCE TODAY
"UNCIVIL SERVANTS," NEW STUDY OF ILLEGAL SIDEWALK PARKING IN CHINATOWN TO BE RELEASED AT A PRESS CONFERENCE ON WEDNESDAY APRIL 26 AT 10 AM ON MULBERRY AND WORTH CIVIC CENTER RESIDENTS COALITION, CHINATOWN COMMUNITY ADVOCATES, MERCHANTS AND RESIDENTS AND TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVES TO SPEAK
Prompted by community outcry, Transportation Alternatives studied the extent of illegal sidewalk parking in census tract 2900, the five block area surrounding the City, State and Federal Courts, New York Police Department Headquarters, the NYPD's 5th Precinct house and the Municipal Building in Lower Manhattan.
The survey found that between 9 and 10 am on the morning of March 29 there were 99 cars illegally parked on sidewalks and in front of fire hydrants in the area and 16 cars illegally parked blocking a pedestrian refuge island. More than 90% of the cars illegally parked had parking placards that allow for free parking in legal parking spots during "official business," but under no circumstances are to be used to park on sidewalks, in front of fire hydrants or in other illegal ways.
Such egregious illegal parking slows emergency response times, jeopardizes public safety, cripples truck and delivery traffic, impedes pedestrian flow, damages businesses and sends a message to community residents that their neighborhood is less important than the private vehicles of civil servants.
"We have to put an end to the parking anarchy in Chinatown. The lack of regulations, enforcement and planning continues to endanger residents and inhibit the revitalization of the community," said City Councilmemeber Alan Gerson.
"We need to return our sidewalks to New York pedestrians. The City must do more to enforce existing laws to ensure sidewalk access and safety," said City Council Transportation Committee Chair John C. Liu.
Transportation Alternatives Executive Director Paul Steely White stated, "Chinatown is being choked to death because the sidewalks and streets are so saturated with illegal parkers. The community is at the end of their rope because the very people with the power to remedy the situation are the worst offenders."
Jan Lee, a store owner and member of the Civic Center Residents Coalition said, "It does not matter what one does for a living. Nothing gives one the right to compromise the safety and economic health of this community. Let's not let occupation cloud the issue of breaking the law."View this press release in PDF format