Some Bayside homeowners are overly frustrated by temporary “No Parking” construction signs that have been posted on telephone poles and trees without notice to the community, resulting in a ticket blitz that they say is unfair.
For resident Gail Sicoli, finding a parking spot on her block or around the corner has been quite an inconvenience due to the “No Parking” signs, she told QNS. She has also received a $60 parking violation ticket and is seeking reimbursement.
According to Sicoli, she received a community advisory flyer notifying residents of restricted curbside and driveway access from 38th Avenue between 206th Street to 205th Street on or about Sep. 23 to Sept. 27 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“To make things as easy as possible I parked around the corner on 204 Street between 36th and 38th Avenue. Note this is the span of two blocks. I did not see the temporary metal ‘No Parking’ sign that was halfway in the middle of the block high up on a post until the following morning after I received a ticket,” Sicoli said.
“Instead of compensating homeowners, they are penalizing us giving tickets when the ‘No Parking’ signs aren’t even visible. I feel like it’s entrapment,” Sicoli added. “I’ve been living with this for a year already. They’ve dug up my sidewalk, repaved it. This whole project has been going on, even longer on the other side of Clearview, all down 38th Avenue.”
On and around 33rd Avenue, 37th Avenue and 38th Avenue in Bayside have become a construction zone, resulting in the placement of the temporary “No Parking” signs, according to the New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC). The project is anticipated to be completed in summer 2021.
“To reduce flooding and improve water infrastructure reliability in Bayside, DDC is replacing old trunk water mains, replacing old storm sewers and installing new storm sewers,” a DDC spokeswoman told QNS. “Fire protection will also be enhanced with the installation of additional fire hydrants.”
Although the “No Parking” signs have been posted, there has been no construction activity at all, Sicoli said.
“I have been surrounded by heavy equipment and gargantuan steel frames and wooden platforms for a year now, with another two years to go,” Sicoli said in her Sept. 30 complaint to the Community Construction Liaison (CCL). “It is unacceptable to receive a ticket when no advance warning was given that half of the street where we could normally park is no longer available. You cannot see the signs at night and they face the street, not the cars!!”
Sicoli’s friend and neighbor, Karen Salvio, who lives on 202 Street and 38th Avenue has received two parking violation tickets, one she says that is $115 for parking in a construction zone.
“They put up the signs when everyone was sleeping, I guess,” Salvio said. “I also wrote a note saying that it was totally bogus. It’s insanity. They’re using up the whole block and there’s nothing here. I can see the corner and down the block where they have put their stuff, but they don’t have to use a residential street.”
According to Salvio, she has also witnessed a construction worker urinating on the side of the truck in broad daylight.
“I should’ve taken a picture and one of the guys was parked in front of the fire hydrant the whole day and I went to the precinct and said he needs a ticket — he didn’t get one,” Salvio said.
Residents have seen an NYPD ticket agent parked every day in the area waiting until 7 a.m. to issue summonses, Sicoli said. Since being notified by a neighbor, Sicoli has looked for other signs, some of which are hidden between trees.
In a statement to QNS, a spokeswoman for the DDC said, “In response to concerns from the local community, the Community Construction Liaison (CCL) Latisha James for this project will work with the contractor’s schedule to give everyone in the affected area a 48- to 72-hour advanced notice of upcoming parking restrictions.”
“Those who believe they have received a parking ticket in error should reach out to the CCL at email@example.com or 347-235-0412 for more information on how to possibly obtain a parking dispute letter,” the spokeswoman said.
As of late, Sicoli said she has been in communication with James and was notified about the Neighborhood Notification Network that residents can sign up for with their email to receive weekly updates on the progress of the project.
Sicoli has also recommended having more visible signs posted, which will be discussed with their resident engineer and contractor.