Posts Tagged ‘Driving’

Alternate Side Suspended

Friday, October 21st, 2011

Today I jolted out of bed panicked, for the first time ever I forgot about my car and alternate side parking!  I dashed down three flights of stairs with bed-head hair and pajamas, my car keys in my clutched fist.  I ran outside bewildered and ran to my car anxiously trying to unlock the club before I got a ticket, no orange piece of paper yet decorating my windshield.  An old man standing by the car in front of me graciously offered to move his car up so that I may get out easily.

This is when it dawned on me that while I was in my rushed state of panic I hadn’t noticed that the block was full of cars.  No one was frantically running to pull out and grab the open spot across the other side.  No one else was worried that it was a whole half hour past the alternate side time plastered on that little red and white sign.  Of course, being a skeptical New Yorker, I walked down to a man four cars ahead of me and asked him if alternate side was suspended.  He said yes, it was a Jewish holiday, today and yesterday.  I thanked him and walked calmly back to my car to put the club back on my steering wheel.  I was relieved and then I had no choice but to laugh at myself, bed head and all.

I think it is time I print out this, the alternate side suspension calendar! http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/motorist/scrintro.shtml#calendar2011

Double Parking: My New Pet Peeve While Driving to Work

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Driving back and forth from Brooklyn (where I work) to Queens (where I live) has been a wild adventure into the chaos that is NYC streets.  While I have found less congested routes, thanks to my resourceful boyfriend, Robert, I still feel apprehensive every time I embark on this journey.

The main reason driving to and fro is mindboggling is: double-parked cars or worse, double parked trucks.  Why is it that if my meter runs out, I am plastered with a ticket in a second after those numbers become 0:00?  However, no matter how many traffic cops I see, I never see anyone ticket a double parked car?

This week I encountered a whole new style of double parking on Dean Street.  Alternate side of the street parking rules were in effect, at least 5 cars remained parked on the wrong side, presumably waiting for the ticket fairy to come.  I don’t care if people want to get a ticket, however there is a bike lane on this already incredibly narrow street, most likely made originally for horse carriages and not motorized machines.  I have no problems with bike lanes either.  What I do have a problem with is people that are obviously too lazy to search for a proper parking space, parking next to the bike lane and the legally parked vehicles along side of it.  These people actually LEAVE there cars on the street in long lines, crowding the entire street!  When they are double parked parallel to a parked car on the other side of the street, it becomes almost impossible to safely pass.

I don’t know why this is allowed to happen.  I don’t understand why this allowed on such narrow streets.  I do know I am tired of this peculiar obstacle course that I need to embark on when driving to work.

According to DOT: Double parking of passenger vehicles is illegal at all times, including Alternate Side Parking Regulation days, regardless of location, purpose or duration.

I understand that parking is hard to find in certain areas of NYC, who are we kidding? All areas of NYC. However, this local tradition of double parking and the authorities turning a blind eye, should perhaps be contained to streets wide enough to accommodate this practice.