Monday, August 9, 2010

Confusing Parking Rules, Poor Street Signage And Unfair Tickets Make Roosevelt Island A Banana Republic Say Riverwalk Resident's Friends!

Roosevelt Island East/West Channel Road South of 405 Main Street

Received the following message from a Roosevelt Island Riverwalk resident last Monday, August 2, regarding friends who received parking tickets despite their being no signage warning them that parking was not permitted at the East/West Tram Station Road.
Some friends decided to visit Roosevelt Island this weekend, and parked their cars on the the east-west cross street directly south of 405 Main (the new Riverwalk Crossing rental building). This street has absolutely no signage concerning parking; attached are several photos as proof.

Image of South Side Of East/West Tram Station Road South of 405 Main St

My friends were shocked to have each found $115 parking tickets upon returning to their respective cars a few hours later.

Image of South Side Of East/West Tram Station Road South of 405 Main St

Can you please post this item on your blog, and ask both the RIOC Board and the PSD if it is appropriate to ticket automobiles parked on streets that have no signage.

Image of South Side Of East/West Tram Station Road South of 405 Main St

Unfortunately, my friends now seem to believe Roosevelt Island is some sort of "banana republic" in which the normal laws of society do not apply.

For your reference, here is an excerpt on signs from the Frequently Asked Questions section of the NYC DOT web site

New York City Traffic Rules state that one sign per block is sufficient. Please check the entire block and read all signs carefully before you park.
I inquired of Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) VP of Operations Fernando Martinez and Public Safety Director Keith Guerra:
I received the email message below from a Riverwalk resident who had friends ticketed for parking their cars on the east/west street just south of 405 Main Street this past weekend. They say that there is no signage prohibiting parking in this area and that they should not have received any tickets.

Can you clarify what the parking rules are for that street and if you wish, comment on the reader's email message?
Following the August 4 RIOC Board Meeting, Mr. Martinez told me that he is looking into the matter and will respond soon.

I informed the Riverwalk resident of my conversation with Mr. Martinez. The resident adds:
I wholeheartedly agree with ticketing (and, if necessary, towing) vehicles that are illegally parked. However, there needs to be adequate signage indicating exactly what the regulations are. In my 2+ years living on Roosevelt Island, I myself am still uncertain about the parking regs due to lack of adequate signage.

Another example is the metered parking along East Channel Drive down by Riverwalk. None of the signs indicate the time slots for which metered parking is in effect; only the Municipal Parking Meter itself lists the hours (24 Hour Lot, Monday - Saturday), and that tiny font on the meter is not easy to read in the dark. And I have absolutely no idea what this means for Sundays: does this mean "Free Parking on Sundays" or "No Parking on Sundays"? Does RIOC expect drivers (who are not familiar with RI) to stop by the Municipal Parking Meter, temporarily double-park, get out and read the tiny font on the Municipal Parking Meter to determine the regs, and then decide if they should look for a parking space based on a vague interpretation of the regs? If residents don't even know the regs, what hope that does leave for the new visitor or occasional driver?

In general, the Roosevelt Island parking signage needs to upgraded to NYC standards. We are most definitely not at that level.
I checked. There is no parking signage on the East/West Channel road but there is a visible sidewalk red stripe, driveway cutout and fire hydrant on the East Side (closest to Queens) of the road

and a sign in front of 405 Main Street that says no parking from the sign to the corner of East/West Channel Road. It is clearly confusing to residents and visitors alike whether parking is permitted in this area or not.

More on Roosevelt Island parking problems from previous posts.

UPDATE 8/10 - A Reader advises:
If a stranger parks by the tram station, where the bus stop sign is covered by a black plastic bag, they will be ticketed for parking in a construction zone.

The only problem is, there is not one sign saying construction zone.

The solution is to go directly to Keith Guerra, Director at Public Safety and insist that the ticket be voided. Do not bother to deal with anyone else at PSD.

You cannot invent parking rules.

Name withheld
UPDATE 8/16 - Mr. Martinez responds:
The north side of East/West Channel Road is designated as a delivery area for building 6. Unfortunately, the contractors for Riverwalk did not install the proper signs or sidewalk markings. I will have it done early next week by RIOC staff. I have instructed PSD not to issue any tickets until we have the proper signage.


Anonymous said...

If in doubt leave your car at Motorgate. There. Can't be easier than that, no? Common sense approach.

Anonymous said...

Public Safety needs to get with the program. A confused bunch as it is, I am sure they are just as confused with all of the parking signs on the island.

Anonymous said...

I also live at Riverwalk and have for the past 8 months. I asked the Building Manager and he said there was never Parking allowed there. The construction company re-did the sidewalk and removed the sign posts. He also said that they are working to get them back up.

Anonymous said...

I used to take the tram. Common sense told me to not park my vehicle across from there. Signs WERE posted there for a very long time until construction started. As far as signs go, I see similar if not the same signage as I do in the city area. A no parking sign is a no parking sign. The person who wrote to the blog could have asked their doorman, or called public safety if they were in any doubt. Best thing you can do is fight it in court.

Anonymous said...

Each time we had a University look at our traffic / oparking problems they recommended a reassessment of the current signage. One commented that there are so many signs that a motorist cannot read them all while driving on Main Street.

It is time for PSD/RIOC to review the situation AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT THEM. I previously mentioned the 15 miles speed limit sign at Good Shepherd's Plaza.I believe it was there before the bus stop was relocated from being in front of Island House to its present location, but never moved.

Anonymous said...

why does the 15mph sign at the good shepherd plaza have to be moved?

Anonymous said...

There are better places than just before a bus stop

Anonymous said...

There is a group of traffic directions close to the 15mph sign at the Good Shepherd Plaza including a full stop sign,a no U-turn sign,a bus stop and a pedestrian walkway. Pick and choose, but please clear it up.

Anonymous said...

hi- does anyone know when parking enforcement starts on monday morning? a friend is visiting from out of town and wants to know whether its ok to park the car on the street near fuji east tonight ( sunday night ) and move it at 7 tomorrow ( monday ) morning- is 7 early enough?

thanks in advance for any answers at this late hour!


The concierge in your building may know - why not ask?

Jodi said...

why does the 15mph sign at the good shepherd plaza have to be moved?