Today’s news:

Parking enforcement hits angle-parked vehicles

Car owners parking their vehicles on three streets in Throggs Neck received a rude awakening recently when after 20 years of angled parking, residents say traffic enforcement agents “swooped in like locusts” and ticketed their cars.

The streets in question - Emerson Avenue, between Miles and Schurz avenues; Balcom Avenue, between Miles and Schurz avenues, and Miles Avenue between Hosmer and Robinson avenues - have had the luxury of angled parking on portions of their streets going back as long as many can remember.

 That all came to an end when unidentified individuals complained to 311 about being unable to back out of their driveway due to the space saving parking measure.

Apparently, not all of the angled parking on the streets was legal. Still, residents are up in arms over their cars being ticketed in areas where this parking practice is officially recognized by the Department of Transportation. 

Ticket agents wrote summonses on cars at Emerson Avenue, despite white lines marked for angled parking being clearly visible.

“I think that many of the parking tickets issued on Miles, Balcom, and Emerson avenues were unjustified,” Councilman Jimmy Vacca said. “I think that when the agents came to investigate the complaint, they didn’t check with their supervisors as to which parking was legal.”

Vacca spoke to DOT commissioner Constance Moran, who was on the scene the same day, and promised to replace a downed DOT sign that authorizes angled parking on Emerson Avenue.

“Basically this started on Miles Avenue and then mushroomed,” Vacca explained. “People need to know what they should do in terms of parking their cars. The agents and their superiors in this case made no effort to warn people beforehand that their cars were going to be ticketed if they continued to angle park.”

For residents of Emerson Avenue, where angled parking has actually been legal for several years, since a street reconstruction job, the tickets seemed like a slap in the face by parking agents, who have been roundly criticized of late for using sneaky and deceptive tactics to increase revenue collection for the city. 

  “Angled parking lines were placed on the street by DOT, and we were told to park at an angle,” said Emerson Avenue resident Fran Annunziata. “Emerson was wide enough for angled parking, and we were just doing what we were told. Someone dropped the ball.”

Annunziata said that she believes that it will soon become clear to all city agencies that angled parking has been legalized at the location, thanks to help from Vacca.

As for the other streets used to angle parking, the park may be a thing of the past thanks to the 311 call.

“Currently, there are no angled parking regulations on Balcom and Miles avenues, which the police were enforcing,” said DOT spokesman Craig Chin. “The traffic rules state no person shall place a vehicle at an angle as to the curb, except when such angle placement is authorized by these rules or by signs or markings.”

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