Who Are NYC’s Worst Sidewalk Hogs? Keep Those Tweets Coming

Car rental outlets on W. 83rd Street in Manhattan don’t own the sidewalk. They just hog it like they do. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/kencoughlin/status/485457059551260672/photo/1##@kencoughlin##
Car rental outlets on W. 83rd Street in Manhattan don’t own the sidewalk. They just hog it like they do. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/kencoughlin/status/485457059551260672/photo/1##@kencoughlin##

There’s still time to submit your photos of sidewalk-hogging businesses.

Inspired by Clarence Eckerson’s pics of a car dealership that swallowed a new sidewalk extension in Sunnyside, we’re looking for other examples across the city. Readers who tweet the most shameless #sidewalkhogs shots will be rewarded with Streetfilms DVDs. Be sure to include location info in your tweets.

Here’s some of what we’re seeing so far.

Manetta’s Restaurant in Long Island City takes over the sidewalk and the access ramp for valet parking. Classy. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/alter_spaces/status/449690329835249664/photo/1##@alter_spaces##
Manetta’s Restaurant in Long Island City takes over the sidewalk and the access ramp for valet parking. Classy. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/alter_spaces/status/449690329835249664/photo/1##@alter_spaces##

The U.S. Postal Service delivers near-total sidewalk obstruction to pedestrians at Broadway and State Street. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/simonsmith1978/status/485910301846822912/photo/1##@simonsmith1978##
The U.S. Postal Service delivers near-total sidewalk obstruction to pedestrians at Broadway and State Street. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/simonsmith1978/status/485910301846822912/photo/1##@simonsmith1978##
  • Joe R.

    I keep thinking the answer here is for the city to just install bollards in any places where businesses using the sidewalk for parking create problems. I’ll grant that if a business does this on a quiet side street I really have no issues with it, but those pictures are all in dense areas where blocked sidewalks force pedestrians into streets full of aggressive motor traffic.

  • Sherman Parking

    Have you seen 207th Street or 181st Street on the Weekends?

  • Edward

    How about any police precinct sidewalk? They all park perpendicular up on the sidewalk, I have yet to see one station where this isn’t the case.

  • Jonathan R

    My personal favorite is 1330 Grant Highway in the Bronx (corner West 170th St), an address occupied by a flat-fix place that uses the sidewalk as storage for its auto tire inventory.

    And they use the bike lane as a workshop.

    And they steal the hydrant water.

    And to top it off, the address is not on the tax rolls, so they are squatters on city property.

    I tweeted my pic but nobody paid any attention.

  • StepUpAndSaySomething

    Even on side streets it makes life miserable for those in wheelchairs or the elderly with walkers. And I just don’t see the point, if you don’t have enough money to buy land to run your business, you can’t run your business. That’s capitalism.

  • beach

    It’s amazing how much this is a culture thing… in the cities I’ve lived in this would not be tolerated, the cars would be towed for sure, so it’s very shocking to see these photos – especially of private businesses co-oping public space. How do you change a culture like that? Especially when the ones who should enforce it are doing it themselves?

    As an example of what the City of Vancouver (BC) does – there is a bylaw (dating from 1955) giving the City the authority to impound any vehicle “unlawfully occupying city streets” and the City contracts out to a towing company that is motivated by $$ to tow as many offending vehicles as possible under the parameters of their contract. I’ve only seen them towing when cars fail to obey the no-parking time limit that strips curbside parking to create an additional lane during rush hour – then there is a line up of tow trucks waiting for the minute the reg comes into effect. Super efficient and effective. That would clear the sidewalks quickly!

  • iSkyscraper

    Try anything in Inwood that is zoned C-8, which seems to mean “automotive related uses including all of the sidewalk you can fill”. Broadway (Broadway!) between W215 and W216 is a prime example. Even Google sees it – follow the below link to see every Streetview photo back to 2009, showing car upon car heaped upon part of the sidewalk:

    http://tinyurl.com/koncux5

  • running_bond

    La Marina for the win:

    – parking on city sidewalks

    – parking on state land (under the highway)

    – conversion of city street into valet parking lot

    – VIP parking on city parkland

    All of the above without any legal approvals whatsoever, although Parks, DOT and NYPD seem to be perfectly fine with it (or are being told to look the other way by highly placed officials). And it happens every Saturday and Sunday from May to September, for three years now.

    See what you think – here is the background and pics:

    https://app.box.com/s/29refqsuobrs1ji9hr41

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