Today’s news:

Illegal lot owner receives wake up call: summons

Community residents recently received some relief for their ongoing concerns after the Department of Buildings cited a questionable parking pad in Zerega for illegalities.

Upon inspection of the 2280 Lyon Avenue property, on Tuesday, August 12, Department of Buildings staff found five motor vehicles parked on the paved lot adjacent to the house. The parking lot does not have a curb cut.

The city agency cited the home’s owner with one violation for the illegal storage of vehicles on the side yard, as he had one vehicle more than legally allowed under local zoning laws.  

“The owner of the lot will now go before an Environmental Control Board where a judge will pick up the case and make a ruling,” DOB spokesperson Charlie Ratzer explained, adding that such violations generally result in a monetary fine.

“I always regret when a homeowner has to pay a fine, but people need to realize that what they do on their own property can have a very serious impact on their neighbors’ quality of life,” Councilman Jimmy Vacca said.

Following the hearing, the property’s owner must rectify the situation and submit a letter of compliance to the court. The DOB will then recheck the property to validate the legal standing.

In response to his  neighbor’s complaints on the issue, the property owner, who didn’t give his name, said, “I don’t see how it could be any of their business.”

The owner, who has reportedly painted four thick, yellow lines on the sidewalk to deter drivers from parking on the sidewalk and blocking the lot, quickly disputed the fact that he charges to stow the cars. But regardless of whether he charges or not, the issue has caused a stir in the community.

Neighboring residents said the site’s owner began providing parking spaces approximately two years ago. Residents further comment that the site was paved with concrete to create a fully-paved parking pad.

“Now there’s constant traffic in and out over there. It’s just not fair,” said one local resident. 

Vacca pointed out that without an official Parking Lot License, the lot not only violates the R5A zoning, which states a two-family home, such as the one in question, is only allowed to have only four vehicles parked on site at any one time, but is also diminishing the character of the block.

“Certainly inviting eight or nine cars to park in your yard can be very disruptive to neighbors,” Vacca explained. “That’s why it’s prohibited by the area’s zoning and that’s why we had to take action in this situation.”

Despite his recent citation, the property’s owner continued to argue he’s done nothing wrong and will continue to operate his parking lot as he sees fit. “This is getting on my nerves,” he said.

Vacca said he’s asked the DOB to continue monitoring the property to prevent any further disturbances from the site, further stating, “Hopefully this homeowner will get the message and have some regard for the other residents of Lyon Avenue.”

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