Press "Enter" to skip to content

Stuy Town parking on loop roads is loopy: D.O.T./N.Y.P.D. reject 15-minute grace period in no-standing zones

BY KEITH J. KELLY | New York Police Department ticket agents are apparently no longer honoring a decades-old agreement reached between the Department of Transportation and former Assemblymember Steve Sanders that allowed a 15-minute grace period for residents to make short stops in no-parking and no-standing zones on the four interior loop roads of Stuyvesant Town.

A recent change on the signage from “NO PARKING” to “NO STANDING ANYTIME” also jacked up the cost of a ticket, nearly doubling it from the old fee of $60 to a new, hefty $115 fine under the current rule.

However, the Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village security team, which also has N.Y.P.D. parking ticket enforcement power, says it is actually granting a 30-minute grace period before it will write tickets to vehicles it catches in the “No Standing Anytime” zones, provided they have flashers on. But the Stuy Town security spokesperson conceded they cannot stop the N.Y.P.D. from enforcing the letter of the law with no grace period whatsoever.

The confusing jumble comes about because although the four loop roads — off of First Avenue, 20th Street, Avenue C and 14th Street — are technically considered private roads, Stuyvesant Town’s owners have long allowed them to be governed by New York City parking regulations. The city is apparently very happy to reap the revenue it gets from residents caught on the loop roads.

N.Y.P.D. ticket agents, as well as the development’s security force, can issue the hefty tickets that amount to $115 per violation.

The jumble of confusing and overlapping regulations has caught the attention of City Councilmember Keith Powers.

“Our office has been engaged in an ongoing dialogue with Beam Living regarding parking at Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village to create better clarity for residents on the parking regulations,” said Kaye Dyja, a spokesperson for Powers. But, so far, there is no resolution.

A Porsche on the loop road inside Stuyvesant Town. (Photo by Keith J. Kelly)

A spokesperson for Beam Living, which manages the complex for the Blackstone hedge fund — which owns the sprawling 80-acre East Side complex, which houses close to 30,000 tenants — acknowledged a 30-minute grace period. But he also conceded the N.Y.P.D. ticket agents are under no obligation to honor the grace period, even if Stuy Town security personnel will grant it.

“The loop roads at Stuy Town are private roads that we allow public access to,” he said. “We know that navigating a community of our size can be quite difficult, so we allow a 30-minute grace period for drivers who need to temporarily stop along our loop roads — as long as they have their flashers on to indicate they are not parked. This generous allowance is longer than any historically allowed here.”

At the same time, the spokesperson acknowledged that the city ticketing agents are under no obligation to honor the grace period that the private security force grants to vehicles with their flashers on.

“We appreciate our residents and most of our visitors being good neighbors and following the rules,” he said. “When people don’t comply, several of our public safety officers are sworn NYC peace officers and have the authority to issue parking summons. This does not limit any city agency’s authority to issue parking violations here, as they have jurisdiction in the city. We encourage all residents and visitors to follow the signage and parking rules to avoid being ticketed.”

He also said that Beam Living recently replaced the “No Parking” signs with “No Standing Anytime” signs, and he said the new signs removed a line that said the signs were D.O.T. approved.

“We recently changed the signage on the right-hand side from ‘No Parking’ to ‘No Standing Anytime’ because there was consistent abuse of the rules. The new signs also removed reference to the Department of Transportation at their request, as these are private roads.”

A Geek Squad van from Best Buy on the Stuyvesant Town loop. Tech troubleshooters and others doing home visits and deliveries could face new parking-ticket trouble in Stuyvesant Town under the confusing new rules. (Photo by Keith J. Kelly)

However, all the “No Standing” signs observed by The Village Sun still had a small line on the bottom indicating that they were D.O.T. approved signage — which, since these are private roads, are technically not supposed to carry such a notation.

Full disclosure: This reporter, who lives in Stuyvesant Town, in the past avoided a fine when he pleaded not guilty to a parking ticket written by an N.Y.P.D. officer in 2019 when the reporter showed up with a copy of the 1992 letter from D.O.T. to then-Assemblymember Steve Sanders reaffirming the 15-minute grace period. The D.O.T. letter at that time said that the agency conveyed this information to the 13th Precinct. (The letter was supplied to this reporter by then-newly elected City Councilmember Keith Powers.).

This March  a car registered to the reporter was issued tickets on two occasions while parked on the loop road. While neither of the recent tickets issued by Stuy Town security had a time stamp when “first observed,” a parking violations ruling rejected the not-guilty plea on the first ticket — despite including the 1992 letter between D.O.T. and former Assemblymember Sanders. The reporter never heard a ruling on the second case and ended up paying the fine on both — amounting to $230.

6 Comments

  1. Matthew Matthew April 29, 2022

    Handshake agreements are corruption. Post the rules on the signs so they are blatantly obvious and known to everyone. If it is a 30 minutes loading zone then post signs indicating 30 minute loading zone. It shouldn’t be the responsibility of some random meter maid to know what parking handshake agreements exist on each block of the city.

  2. ml ml April 29, 2022

    Wish the City would ticket food trucks that situate themselves at bus stops…..
    the food trucks block visibility for bus driver/people waiting, hamper bus movement and make access hard for people in wheelchairs

    • Cynthia Chaffee Cynthia Chaffee April 30, 2022

      Dear Keith,
      Excellent article, can you please post a copy of the 1992 letter from DOT to Assemblyman Steve Sanders.
      Thank you.

  3. Peter Chaffee Peter Chaffee April 30, 2022

    Everyone seems to be concerned with the “letter of the law” and collecting money. No one seems to consider the need and convenience of the persons who temporarily park there to carry out some needed purpose. My wife is disabled, and when we were not able to park in front of the church on 14th street we parked in the loop for an hour with a handicap placard so I could drop her off at church and pick her up after Mass. Now, the city and real estate company of Stuyvesant Town begrudge that. I’m sure there are plenty of people who temporarily stop on the loop to offload furniture or pick it up. Why should they have to line the pockets of the city for normal conveniences? It is penny-pinching people who need some quality of life.

    • LES3025 LES3025 May 1, 2022

      I don’t think anyone is complaining about people parking in parking zones or loading and unloading in loading zones. This is about people who park or stand in No Parking/No Standing zones.

      Maybe counterintuitively, the low cost and lax enforcement around driving and parking harms people like you and your wife who actually need to drive. It’s relatively cheap and easy to bring a car into the city, so a lot of people who don’t need to do so do anyway, taking up limited parking and creating congestion. If we made it a bit more expensive and inconvenient for everyone to drive, fewer people would do it and it would make the driving experience much better for the people who actually need to.

  4. Susan Zetscha Susan Zetscha May 8, 2022

    I live in StuyTown. This is a ridiculous way to have a a parking rule. Either you can park or you cannot park while you unload your car. As a senior citizen it is very difficult to have to haul any purchases from some parking space blocks away. I need to be able to unload everything near my apartment and NOT get a ticket. Fix this. Make the whole Loop Roads Loading Zones. Do that now, make it official that residents can unload their cars near their apartments. 15 minutes, 30 minutes, either will work for most purposes. Flashers on is also fine. This is especially important to the senior population. Fix this.

Leave a Reply

Mission News Theme by Compete Themes.