» Parking & Driving Advice

November 21, 2014

The NYC Gridlock Alert Days for 2014 are:

  • Friday, November 21
  • Wednesday, November 26
  • Wednesday, December 3
  • Friday, December 5
  • Thursday, December 11
  • Friday, December 12
  • Wednesday, December 17
  • Thursday, December 18
  • Friday, December 19

You know the drill:

  • Avoid driving in Midtown NYC
  • Take NYC subways or NYC buses
  • Walk
  • If you do drive, park in a NYC Parking Garage — avoid traffic, avoid a NYC parking ticket, avoid a headache
Filed under: NYC Parking,Parking & Driving Advice — Tags: , — mtohn @ 11:52 am
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April 8, 2014

NYC Alternate Side Parking ASPI both applaud and do not understand people who use NYC street parking and move their cars 2 – 3 times a week to comply with the NYC Alternate Side Parking Regulations (ASP). These are the regulations that force car owners to move their cars for 1 – 3 hours so the street is clear for the street sweeping trucks. It’s a heroic and long honored ritual for many NYC car owners.

But this daunting activity may get easier. According to the NY Daily News, NYC Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez (D-Manhattan), is proposing legislation that would let NYC drivers legally take parking spots once the street sweeper passed by — ending the need for drivers to wait inside their cars until the no-parking time period lapses.

Rodriguez first introduced the bill in 2010, and got a majority of the Council to join as co-sponsors, including Melissa Mark-Viverito (D-Manhattan). The bill stalled, which might have been because: Read more…

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February 26, 2014

AAA logoAAA’s Car & Travel magazine wrote a great set of common questions about common car maintenance issues. Take the test and see how you do!

The tire-pressure light is glowing. You should inflate your tires to:

a. The pressure listed on the inside of your car door.
b. The pressure listed on the tire’s sidewall.
c. The pressure that causes the tire-pressure light to shut off.
d. 32 psi.

Correct answer is “a”. On most cars, the proper tire pressure is shown on the driver’s-side door jamb or in the glove box. It’s also in your owner’s manual. Do not use the numbers shown on the tire itself. Those typically are maximum pressures, not the tire pressure that’s right for your car to insure proper barking and handling.

A significant drop in outside air temperature also can cause tire pressure to drop.

The “check engine” light comes on. The first thing you should do is:

a. Drive to a safe, well-lighted location before you get stranded.
b. Add one quart of oil.
c. Tighten the gas cap.
d. Carefully off the road and shut off the engine for 30 minutes before restarting.

Correct answer is “c”. Yes, a loose gas cap can cause the car to sense an air leak in the fuel tank. If securing the gas cap doesn’t solve the problem, chances are it’s an exhaust-emissions issue.  And if you see a flashing “check engine” light, that could mean an overhating catalytic converter – a serous probem that should be serviced immediately.

The indicator light that looks like a battery is shining. You must:  Read more…

Filed under: Parking & Driving Advice — Tags: , — mtohn @ 2:16 pm
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Image,_Snowy_drivingIt looks like winter isn’t going away anytime soon, so we want to share some tips for safe winter driving, courtesy of AAA’s magazine, Car & Travel.

Do not pump your brakes to stop on icy roads. Surprised? So were we. Our mothers had told us this for years, but Car & Travel says that was the right approach before vehicles had antilock braking system (ABS), which nearly all vehicles have now. If you’ve ever felt a vibration in the brake pedal on a slick road, you have witnessed ABS at work as the system prevents wheel lock-up. So instead of pumping the brakes, keep firm pressure on the brake pedal until your car comes to a complete stop.

Do not hit your brakes hard if your car goes into a  skid. This one we knew. But what we didn’t know is that there are two types of skids: Read more…

Filed under: NYC Driving,Parking & Driving Advice — Tags: , , — mtohn @ 10:20 am
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November 27, 2013

The NYC Gridlock Alert Days for 2013 are:

  • Wednesday, November 27
  • Wednesday, December 4
  • Friday, December 6
  • Thursday, December 12
  • Friday, December 13
  • Wednesday, December 18
  • Thursday, December 19
  • Friday, December 20

You know the drill:

  • Avoid driving in Midtown NYC
  • Take NYC subways or NYC buses
  • Walk
  • If you do drive, park in a NYC Parking Garage — avoid traffic, avoid a NYC parking ticket, avoid a headache
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November 22, 2013

In most of NYC’s residential areas, you can park on the street for free. In exchange for that free NYC street parking, you’ll also put up with moving your car twice a week for NYC’s Alternate Side Parking Regulations for street cleaning and circling the blocks to actually find a space.

A NYC parking garage, on the other hand, can cost you $300 – $600 per month depending on your neighborhood. For this price, your car is safe, is warm in the winter and doesn’t get damaged by chemicals to melt the snow, and is ready when you need it.

But how much would New Yorkers pay for a Residential Street Parking Permit that let them park in their neighborhood? Theoretically, the benefit would be more available NYC street parking, but no guarantees of getting a spot. Vehicles would still be subject to nature (rain, snow, wind, dirt) and human nature (damage, theft).  Transport researchers Zhan Guo of New York University and Simon McDonnell of the City University of New York surveyed a small group of New Yorkers and report that roughly 53 percent of New Yorkers are willing to pay something for residential street spaces — and this something averaged about $400 a year.

But the research is a bit flawed. Read more…

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October 21, 2013

Image,_NYC_website,_new_design_October_2013NYC has just launched a new website, http://www1.nyc.gov/, and at first glance, we think the navigation and design is much better. Really clear and clean layout and links, the homepage gives the status of NYC Alternate Side Parking regulations, the font is easy to read,and of course we checked out the sections for NYC Parking, NYC Traffic Violations, and what you might want to know and NYC garages and getting around.

Image,_NYC_website,_new_design,_Alternate_Side_Parking_icon

Alternate Side Parking — the left hand side of the homepage will let you know if the regulation is in effect today.

 

 

 

 

 

Public Parking Lot — unfortunately, the website tells you to ‘Call 311’ to find a Public NYC Parking Lot. Not much help.  Read more…

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September 30, 2013

Image,_Car2GoCould this really be the end to driving around looking for the elusive free NYC street parking space? Can we really look forward to not shelling out  $40 an hour to park in a NYC parking garage?

Not so fast, but it is a possibility. Earlier in 2013, Car2Go, a car-sharing company focusing on one-way rentals, negotiated with both Washington, DC and San Francisco to purchase:

  1. Access to street parking in permit-only areas, and 
  2. Specific street parking spaces without paying any parking meter fees. 

If you rent a vehicle from Car2Go, you get Read more…

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May 6, 2013

We often get asked about Disabled Parking Permits, or Handicapped Parking Permits, for NYC parking. Here’s a quick overview of both the NYC and NYS permits with information about where you can use these permits, how to apply for the permit, and other valuable information.

NYC Parking Permit for People with Disabilities (PPPD)

  • Display: A rectangular placard which can be placed on the dashboard. You can have several license plates associated with the Permit.
  • Allows parking at most NYC curbside street parking, including:
  1. All NYC “No Parking*” zones on the street except No Parking zones for taxi stands,
  2. All No Standing spaces authorized for doctors, press, diplomats and government agencies,
  3. All metered NYC street parking spaces without paying, and
  4. All ‘No Standing, Trucks Loading & Unloading’ zones except for specified restricted hours.
  • DOES NOT ALLOW parking at:
  1. Any “No Stopping” zones,
  2. Any ‘No Standing’ zones other than listed above, Read more…
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April 29, 2013
Image,_Electric_Vehicle_Charging,_NYT

Hiroko Matsuike/The New York Times

As part of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s legacy, he wants to add 10,000 public parking spots for electric vehicles (EVs) over the next seven years, with 2,000 of these NYC parking spaces having electric vehicle charging stations.

Right now, NYC has 100 public electric vehicle charging stations (mostly in off-street NYC parking garages) plus another 120 charging stations for NYC’s fleet of 458 electric vehicles. Bloomberg’s proposal would add another 30 charging stations for NYC vehicles, bringing the total to 150 to be used by NYC-owned electric vehicles.

In his February 2013 address, Bloomberg said, “This year we’ll pilot curbside vehicle chargers that will allow drivers to fill up their battery in as little as 30 minutes. We’ll work with Read more…

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