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Longtime Inwood Garage Jacking Up Parking Prices by $125 a Month

 Customers said they had only a few weeks notice to find alternative parking arrangements.
Inwood Garage
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INWOOD — They're revved up.

Uptown drivers who park their cars at a Dyckman Street garage are blowing a gasket after they were told to pay $125 per month more for their spots — or move to another garage a mile away that's more pricey than their current spot.

Customers who park their cars at the Edison Garage, located at 270 Dyckman St., on a monthly basis recently learned that the second and third floors of the building would be undergoing renovations beginning Dec. 1.

They said Edison informed them that a limited number of first-floor spaces would be made available for customers willing to pay $375 a month — a 50 percent increase over the normal $250 monthly fee.

Liam Mulligan, 47, parked at the garage for 10 years before he received a letter at the end of October warning him of the price hike.

“The letter was kind of a shock, to say the least,” Mulligan said. “That’s way outside what is expected in this neighborhood. The highest prices are around $250, so to be charged $125 more is outrageous.”

Moreover, customers’ contracts show that they must be given at least one month’s notice of any changes to the fees. But some car owners said they were only made aware of the situation last week, leaving them scrambling to make alternative arrangements.

Edison Properties spokesman Adam Sank would not say whether the garage will offer the same number of monthly spots after the renovation or what the rates will be in the future. However, he said he did not anticipate the monthly rate decreasing from $375 after the renovations.

“We’re doing everything we can to accommodate our existing customers,” he said. “However, we’re also a business so we’re going to make the best decision possible for our customers and the business.”

The only concession management has offered drivers is the option to park in another Edison-owned garage on 10th Avenue near 212th Street, which is located about a mile from the current garage and will cost $300 per month.

Ann Jackowitz, 69, who's parked her car at the garage for almost 20 years, said she was unaware of the planned renovations until she got a call from one of the garage’s managers on Nov. 12.

“I said, ‘You have to give me a month’s notice — this is unacceptable,'" she said.

The 10th Avenue garage is not a viable option for drivers like Jackowitz, who chose the Dyckman Street garage for its proximity to their homes. 

“I don’t know anybody who parks over there, not any women anyway, because it’s unsafe,” she said of the 10th Avenue location. “It’s an industrial area. It’s under the 1 train, and at night there’s no restaurants around, nothing.”

Mulligan and others said that the Dyckman Street garage has become an increasingly popular parking location for people going to bars in the area, including La Marina, which holds weekly concerts in the summer.

“This seems ridiculous and more of a way to get rid of people who aren’t willing to pay a premium,” he said.

After DNAinfo reached out to Edison, Sank said a second letter would be mailed to customers Thursday to notify them that they could stay at the garage at the $250-per-month rate through Jan. 1, rather than Dec. 1.

He said the company has been trying to work with customers by reserving spots at the 10th Avenue garage at $50 less than the normal monthly rate, as well as providing information about other garages in the area.

But that wasn't enough for some locals who took to a local Facebook group to vent their frustrations.

“$375 is what you would pay on the Upper West Side," wrote one Edison customer, "not Inwood.”