NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New York City pedestrians and the City Council are pushing back against car dealerships they say have stolen their sidewalks.
“It can be a nuisance,” one person said.
“It looks like it should be under the Gowanus Expressway or something,” said another.
Dealerships have been parking their cars where people walk, specifically in Brooklyn and Queens.
“I’m basically stepping over the bumper of a car to try and get into the street,” Calvin McGoldrick, of Bay Ridge, said.
In Bay Ridge, CBS2 busted a Hyundai dealer on Fourth Avenue. When it saw our cameras, it moved one of its cars that was illegally parked.
CBS2 also spotted four cars on the sidewalk at the Park Slope Auto Center. Even the image Google Maps snapped of it shows two cars illegally parked.
“It’s more than just an inconvenience, though. I think it’s a safety issue,” said Emily Porro, of Park Slope.
That’s why the City Council is pushing for a bill to revoke car dealers’ licenses if they become repeat offenders.
“Anytime when you have cars infringing on public space and pedestrians space, it’s a problem,” City Councilman Justin Brannan, of Brooklyn, said.
City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, of Queens, is sponsoring the bill.
“They’re actually pushing people, pedestrians, onto the streets,” he said.
The councilman said the issue has become an epidemic on Northern Boulevard, where car dealerships are not afraid of the current $115 fine. But the bill would transfer the issue to the Department of Consumer Affairs.
“It allows the commissioner to revoke their licenses if there are two infractions within a year,” said Van Bramer.
That would shut down the dealerships.