New Rochelle Adds to Parking Woes

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New Rochelle adds to pakring woes by Peggy Godfrey

Letter to Editor in Journal News, 2/20/10
     Another simplistic solution has been proposed in New Rochelle:  24 hour parking fees for all municipal parking lots and extension of paid parking at meters to ll p.m. On February 2 Ralph DiBart, spokesman for the Parking Task Force and Executive Director of the Business Improvement District (BID), made the recommendation to City Council and cited the need for consistency when questioned.  Obviously this need for consistency has been created by residents who park their cars overnight for free in municipal lots at night, because it is believed apartment dwellers in the downtown do not purchase parking spaces from their apartment or purchase a city parking permit.
     So the question remains:  how has the City reached the point where apartment residents do not want to pay for parking?  The zoning practices of the city, especially in downtown, do not require new developers to provide enough parking spaces for tenants and do not mandate that each apartment complex must provide a sufficient amount of parking spaces on their premises.  Businesses, especially restaurants in downtown, will also suffer needlessly from a 24/7 parking policy as diners may not want to worry about feeding a meter. 
     Shortsighted zoning codes have led to over-development, especially in the downtown.  Density bonuses only create more congestion and traffic jams.  24/7 parking fees solve nothing.  Isn’t it time for our City Council and BID to see the errors of their previous decisions.