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Eyes on the Street

The Sunday Parking Free-for-All on Junction Boulevard

3:25 PM EDT on July 9, 2018

Isn’t free parking glorious?

Free parking isn't free.

Sure, on Sundays, drivers don't have to pay parking meters. But they impose plenty of costs on the rest of us -- not to mention other drivers stuck in the logjam that free parking creates.

For proof, check out this scene from Junction Boulevard in Queens yesterday. Biking on Junction just north of Roosevelt Avenue, Clarence Eckerson counted a whopping 27 double-parked cars on a mere two blocks. Good luck if you count on the Q72 to get to work at LaGuardia -- first you have to get through this sludge:

Free Sunday parking meters are a legacy of city legislation enacted in October, 2005. Until then, about half of the city's parking meters did charge on Sundays.

Overriding a mayoral veto, the City Council voted to make all parking meters free on Sunday. The council was egged on by mayoral challenger Freddy Ferrer, who went on the attack against incumbent Michael Bloomberg by claiming that Sunday parking meters were a tax on churchgoers.

Instead of making it easier for anyone to get around, the result of free Sunday meters is this mess: Curbs are clogged all day long, double-parking runs rampant, and access to commercial streets gets harder.

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