INWOOD — The scourge of double-parked cars is hitting Uptown hard — and police say the problem is only increasing as more outsiders visit the community.
NYPD officers in Washington Heights and Inwood's 34th Precinct have issued the most summons — approximately 9,890 year-to-date — than any other Manhattan precinct north of 59th Street, Capt. Peter Andrea of the 34th Precinct told those present for the 34th Precinct council meeting Wednesday night at 650 Academy St.
Last year, officials said, the precinct issued 8,556 tickets for double-parking — but despite the enforcement, the problem keeps growing as Inwood and Washington Heights becomes a destination for out-of-towners.
There were almost 1,400 double-parking tickets issued by officers in the precinct in the past 20-day period alone, he said.
“You would think [increased ticketing] would decrease the double parking,” Andrea said, “But unfortunately, I think it’s because we get a lot of transient people, they double-park and they get the summons and they drive back to Jersey, or they drive downtown and then we get somebody else to double-park. So we’re constantly battling that.”
Police said many of the drivers who have been issued tickets are from New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, among other places.
“Every year, it seems like we’re getting busier and busier with the traffic conditions,” said Deputy Inspector Reymundo Mundo, the Commanding Officer of the 34th Precinct. “Washington Heights has become the place to come to. People from around the city come here.”
Mundo said the precinct has issued over 16,000 parking summons in total since the beginning of the year — including for talking on a cellphone, texting, making improper turns and speeding — an increase from approximately 14,000 the previous year. Last week, he added, the precinct issued 66 tickets for speeding in the area.
Police said the double-parking problem in Uptown is on top of the valet parking problem, which they said has also been difficult to enforce.
“We’re not going to tolerate it,” Mundo said. “I think we’re doing a good job. But the job never ends.”