Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In
Parking

NYC Could Do So Much More With the Space We Let Parking Consume

An Upper West side community board recently made the opening sally of a bid to bring resident-permit parking to New York. Can New Yorkers improve on other cities’ methods? Photo: Streetopia UWS

For a city where space is supposedly a precious resource, New York gives away a shocking amount of square footage to car parking. There are around four million surface parking spaces in the city -- and almost all of them are free. Despite some recent tinkering on the margins, New York City zoning also mandates parking for most new development in most of the city. All that parking is generating traffic and hogging space that could be used for walking, biking, transit, and housing.

While global peers like Mexico City enact reforms to tackle the problem of excessive parking, New York is still taking steps backward on parking policy, like Mayor de Blasio's recent addition of 50,000 parking placards. NYC needs to do better. If we want extensive car-free zones, safe streets for biking, and surface transit that moves quickly and reliably, we need to cut down on parking.

As part of the recently-launched Streetopia campaign, Clarence put together this short overview of how cities including Zurich, Tokyo, and Olso are removing parking to curb traffic and improve other forms of transportation. Watch it and share far and wide:

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Disabled NYer’s are Victims of Gov. Hochul’s Congestion Pricing Pause

So many New Yorkers can’t use the closest subway station to their homes because they don't have an elevator. And Gov. Hochul just halted funding for 23 new lifts.

July 23, 2024

DOT Will Fast-Track Private Sidewalk E-Bike Charging Stations

The mayor announced a new sidewalk e-bike charging station initiative, along with progress on the e-bike battery swap program and more money to FDNY for educational outreach.

July 23, 2024

Tuesday’s Headlines: LEGO Finally Gets It Edition

Streetsblog has had our issues with LEGO over the years, but we're willing to forgive. Plus other news.

July 23, 2024

Speeding Fuels Pedestrian Death Crisis As Council Stalls ‘Sammy’s Law’ Changes

Pedestrian fatalities were up 27 percent in the first six months of the year compared to 2023.

July 23, 2024

Bike Rack Saves Pedestrians in Crash on Busy Brooklyn Street

The white Hyundai involved in the crash has been nabbed 10 times by city speed- and red-light cameras since Oct. 10, 2023, city records show.

July 22, 2024
See all posts