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Police clear tractor trailers from Lafayette Avenue

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After a couple of years of wrangling that produced little progress, tractor-trailers using Lafayette and Brush avenues as a truck stop finally got the boot.

The NYPD, which had started an innovative booting program for tractor-trailer trucks parking overnight on city streets, recently brought the long-overdue innovation to the Bronx.

For several years, many truckers that catered to local business used Lafayette Avenue, between Balcom and Brush avenues, as a makeshift truck stop.

The practice was finally put to rest when Community Board 10’s district service cabinet, which invites representatives from various city agencies to a monthly meeting, asked high-ranking officials from the NYPD’s Traffic Enforcement Division to create a play to stop the habitually offending truckers from using city streets as a parking lot.

“We brought the matter to the attention of the senior management of traffic enforcement, and they embarked on a truck booting program,” Community Board 10 district manager Ken Kearns said. “Apparently, the other truckers got the word, and they are not parking there anymore.”

JoAnne Sohmers, of the Ferry Point Park Civic Association, said that district manager Kearns and Senator Jeff Klein were instrumental in getting traffic enforcement to finally take action.

“The trucks disappeared [suddenly] a few days ago,” Sohmers stated. “They have been parking on Lafayette Avenue, near Monsignor Scanlan High School, for many years.”

One community leader, who researched the situation, said it was lucrative for the trucks to park on the street and receive tickets, rather than pay for parking elsewhere.

Dorothea Poggi, of the Ferry Point Community Advocates, said certain subcontractors of local business and government agencies in the Brush Avenue area began to use the area as a layover in the last few years.

“Certain subcontractors of [agencies] insist on parking their trucks on the street,” Poggi noted, saying the trucks often rest in front of St. Raymond’s Cemetery on Lafayette Avenue.

Poggi said she tracked down a couple of subcontractors to figure out why they maintain those locations.

“If a driver could pocket a budget for legal parking, and then pay five parking tickets a year, he came out ahead of the game,” Poggi stated. “Now the police department boots the trucks, throwing them off schedule. Booting made the difference.”

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