Crossed signals: Unfinished crosswalks used as makeshift (illegal) parking spots

Blank space: City workers left crosswalks unfinished in Bay Ridge because of illegally parked cars — and have yet to return to finish the job.
Brooklyn Paper
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Talk about dropping a line.

City workers painting crosswalk stripes stopped short in front of illegally parked cars, leaving the markings unfinished across Bay Ridge, and now parking-starved drivers are seizing the empty patches as if they were legitimate spots.

The parking free-for-all will likely land drivers in hot water with the law, and could have easily been avoided if the city had just come back and finished the job weeks ago, groused one local.

“Why does painting a few lines on the ground take weeks? Everything is this whole song and dance now,” said Bay Ridgite Anthony Vallaro, whose station wagon eats up nearly two parking spots. “It’s one of those dumb city things because now people just desperate to park their cars are going to park in those spaces and probably get a ticket. Lord knows they’ll take any excuse to give one.”

The Department of Transportation annually refurbishes faded crosswalks and other street markings each spring. Wear and tear, erosion from salt during snowfall, and street repaving create a frequent need to repaint the lines and symbols, according to Community Board 10’s district manager Josephine Beckmann.

But scofflaw drivers who park in crosswalks force city workers to work around their cars, leaving gaps in the white stripes. And instead of waiting around for the vehicles to move, painters have left the job half finished at a handful of intersections, predominantly along Fourth Avenue.

It’s not the first time the nabe has dealt with the unfinished business and left locals wondering if bumping their boots out onto the empty asphalt will land them in traffic court.

“I do know there have been issues in the past,” said Beckmann. “The question I have is, legally, where is it summonsable? Where is it illegal — is that distinguished by an end of a corner or the painted line?”

But there is no refuge from eagle-eyed traffic agents, because it is illegal to park at the intersections, whether they have painted lines or not, according to the Department of Transporta­tion’s website. And some locals feel the need to warn their four-wheel-roving neighbors to resist the temptation to snag an easy spot.

“Nothing good can come from parking at an intersecti­on,” said Bay Ridgite Gary Rehbein, who once thought about seizing the empty space with his car but curbed his enthusiasm. “Is it really worth the aggravation of a ticket?”

Repairs for the bare squares are scheduled in the next few weeks, according to a Department of Transportation spokeswoman.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.
Updated 5:59 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Resident from Brooklyn says:
DOT should have NYPD tow the cars so these crosswalks can be painted!
May 18, 2017, 9:48 am
Jane from Bay Ridge says:
It's funny how the "eagle-eyed traffic agents" miss all the illegally parked cars in front of fire hydrants that have special placards or safety vests in the window of their vehicles with the letters D-O-T or N-Y-P-D on them.
May 18, 2017, 9:51 am
Blogger Bill from from Boerum Hill says:
DOT flat out refused to fix an identical failure due
to an illegally parked car--Pacific/Bond. DOT also
refuses to replace corner curbing with ramp for
disabled/elderly. Good luck with your campaign
to correct the painting--NYPD won't ticket cars parked illegally, they say it amounts to entrapment, which DOT can easily correct.
May 18, 2017, 10:17 am
Hello from NYC says:
DOT, I have two words for you: tow truck.
May 18, 2017, 10:23 am
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
Its funny that last week I saw a car being towed from the spot that blogger bill is complaining about north side of Pacific street just east of Bond. BTW the same painting scheme was done on south side Bergen just west of Bond..and other places.
May 18, 2017, 10:48 am
vooch from 10021 says:
NYC is the only city in the civilized world that allows car storage within 15' of a crosswalk

every other city 'daylights' intersections for the safety of innocent children, elderly, and mothers.

NYC on the other hand caters to the tiny minority of private car owners by offering them free storage on public property.

Note until 1952 it was illegal to store your car overnight in NYC on the public street.
May 18, 2017, 11:45 am
boof from brooklyn says:
And while you're at it, tow any car parked in a crosswalk, even if you're not painting.
May 18, 2017, 11:45 am
Tyler from pps says:
Careful vooch -- I was attacked for using this oh so complicated and mysterious term, daylighting, not that long ago. And my interlocutors were very proud of their willful ignorance and absolute refusal to take any effort to understand (or stop pretending like they didn't understand)
May 18, 2017, 12:56 pm
Ben from Clinton Hill says:
guys you are total out our your mind look for a real job will ya........
May 18, 2017, 2:28 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The thing you bike zealots don't understand is we motorists are not capable of walking at least one city block away from our cars. That level of exercise would certainly give me or any of the other slobs that drive around a heart attack.

In other words you need to read Animal Farms to understand why Hamas hates Israel and why I have to stay at least 50 feet away from places where children are present.
May 18, 2017, 3:14 pm
Chris from Bushwick says:
Strong satire, previous commenter, A , would read again.
May 18, 2017, 3:40 pm
TOM from Sunset Park says:
When Rudy was Mayor and needed cash he settled the problem of how to measure the limits for parking. All the tix writers liked it.
First, they painted yellow lines on the curbstones 15' both ways from the hydrant.
Second, paint crosswalks from the intersection curb to the lot line of the corner property. Just look down the row of building facades which is at the lot line.
If the wheels of the vehicle touch or intrude where those lines are painted, write a ticket. If the front bumper or ass-end of the vehicle hangs over those lines--no ticket. It's the wheel well, stupid. Rudy got his money and there no more arguments. That was the idea back then. Today, good luck.

Of course, with bike lanes it's the same and it's different. If you double park your vehicle against the parked vehicle at the curb on an Alternate Side of the Street day but beyond the adjacent bike lane(out in the middle of the road) and your tire even touches the outside of the line of the bike lane, you are blocking that bike lane and are ticketed.
May 18, 2017, 9:23 pm
Kit from Boerum Hill says:
What is daylighting? Never heard it before.
May 18, 2017, 11:41 pm
Chris Wong from Kensington says:
What makes them illegal?? I park there all the time! Cars fit fine. Don't go arround making unsubstansiated allegations!
May 19, 2017, 8:26 am
Chris Wong from Kensington says:
And to Kit - Daylighting is a system whereby we changes the clocks back in autumn and forward in spring to increase the number of daylight hours. Have you never heard of this???
May 19, 2017, 8:28 am
Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
Ah, good old vooch made an appearance. The poster that wants to sell the highways, roads, and subways to the highest bidder. I'm with you, let's bring on that Libertarian paradise.
May 19, 2017, 11:52 am
Tyler from pps says:
Tom... " If you double park your vehicle...." You can stop there. That's illegal. You should get a ticket. Even on alternate side days. Done.
May 19, 2017, 2:32 pm
Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
Should you get a ticket if you park after the street sweeper goes by? Because that is straight up theft.
May 19, 2017, 3:35 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First of all I wasn't here all day yesterday, and I feel that Chris from Bushwick did the impersonation especially seeing that his comment is only not that far apart plus complementing that, which makes him a good suspect. Either way, the blame should go to those who didn't finish the crosswalk, not the motorists that are parking there. They should finish it, but for some reason they don't, so others only assume that they were done with it. BTW, there is a technicality rule when it comes to parking, it's really the wheels that can't cross something be it a curb marking or a crosswalk, not the front or back tip of a car. I know this because I have done that a few times and didn't get ticketed mainly because neither the front or back wheels were touching, plus I doubt that I was just dodging a bullet on getting fined. One other thing, there is no rule against parking over a limit line, also known as a stop bar, or speed bump. Then again, the anti-car fanatics will never be satisfied unless they get everything going their way.
May 19, 2017, 4:29 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Am I really this dumb?

May 22, 2017, 12:47 pm

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