Sept. 26, 2018 By Nathaly Pesantez
A new report puts Woodside near the top of the list of neighborhoods with the most 311 parking placard abuse complaints in the past year.
The neighborhood came in at number two in a report released yesterday by Localize.city, a website that offers data on city addresses, that analyzes where New Yorkers have filed the most complaints on placard abuse.
The website found that 3,663 complaints about improper use of parking permits were made to 311 citywide from May 23, 2017 (when the city added the type of complaint to its lineup) through Aug. 6, 2018.
On a neighborhood scale, Localize.city found that Woodside had the second highest complaint ratio of 2.48 complaints filed per 1,000 residents–behind the Financial District in Manhattan with 2.56 complaints. The report listed nine neighborhoods with the highest complaint ratios, which included Maspeth, the Rockaways, and Long Island City in ninth place.
Woodside’s second-place position is entirely due to a repeat problem area that the website was able to narrow in on. On a separate list of six citywide hot spot areas, the Woodside address of 31-06 54th St. ranked second, garnering 86 complaints.
It’s unclear why the Woodside address sees so many complaints.
“The hot spots reveal where residents are particularly annoyed and vocal about neighbors abusing placards as well as other parking violations,” said Michal Eisenberg, a data scientist at Localize.city.
The website also notes that complaints about placard abuse overlap, or are interchangeable, with complaints about violating parking sign rules, and can be observed at the Woodside address, which received 64 complaints about violating parking signs.
“People tend to complain about placards when they see them in spots where many others also tend to park illegally,” Eisenberg said. “Or it may be that both violations are occurring simultaneously and people aren’t sure which descriptor to choose when filing their complaint: parking sign violation or placard abuse.”
While the report focuses on placard abuse reporting, it notes that the citywide issue has shown little signs of abating, despite placard abuse complaints only making up 1 percent of all parking-related complaints.
“Although a lot of New Yorkers know that placard abuse is a problem, and City officials are trying to do something about it — including creating a new avenue for complaints through 311 — the number of official complaints are relatively small at this point,” Eisenberg said.
Placard abuse has long been a quality of life issue across the city, with New Yorkers observing thousands of city-issued permit holders using them to park in bus lanes, bike lanes, no standing zones, and other areas without being ticketed.
The City Council recently introduced a bill aimed at cracking down on placard abuse, while Mayor Bill de Blasio vowing earlier this year to take measures against those violating placard rules.