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They're Baaack: Here Come the Street Sweepers in Full Effect

Alternate side parking rules reinstated for the first time since the Pandemic
Screen Shot 2022-07-07 at 12.33.56 PM
One DSNY street sweeper can collect 1,500 pounds of trash per shift, according to DSNY press secretary Vincent Gragnani. Photo: Wikimedia

On Tuesday, alternate side parking (ASP) rules were fully reenacted, meaning that New Yorkers living in residential neighborhoods will be required to move their vehicles semi-weekly once again, according to Gothamist.

ASP was suspended during the pandemic to avoid unnecessary trips outside. The reversal comes as Mayor Eric Adams attempts to address common complaints about dirty streets and trash, in addition to an increase in the rat population.

“I think it’s a bummer; I think everyone got used to potentially only having to move their car once a week,” Prospect Heights resident Erin Rheiner said. “Obviously, we all want clean streets, but it’d be great if they could figure out a way to keep the streets clean and not have alternate side parking in effect twice a week.”

ASP also serves as a reliable revenue generator for the city.  Most available statistics from the city comptroller’s office show the city generated $515 million in annual revenue from parking fines in Fiscal Year 2016. A parking ticket for ignoring ASP rules can cost $65.

Although Mayor Bill de Blasio, who suspended ASP in June 2020, suggested it could become a permanent change, Adams says that returning to the old model is necessary to address the growing trash problem.

 “New Yorkers tell it like it is, and everywhere I’ve gone in the last couple of years, they’ve told me the streets don’t look the way they should,” Adams wrote in a statement to Gothamist. “We have heard the complaints loud and clear: we need to get trash off our streets, and by restoring alternate side parking, as well as investing $22 million in additional litter basket pickups, New Yorkers will get the clean streets they deserve.”

The city is also spending $11 million on more street cleaning equipment, including smaller street sweepers that can clean protected bike lanes, according to an announcement by the city in April.