The proposal from the City Department of Planning to ease parking requirements in a so-called “Transit Zone” to encourage more affordable and senior housing is a bad idea.
In much of the Borough, parking is impossible. In neighborhoods in the “Transit Zone,” like Astoria, Jackson Heights, Ridgewood, Flushing, Woodhaven and Jamaica, residents have long complained of a lack of street parking. Despite the Department of City Planning’s assertion that these neighborhoods are within walking distance of subways, many residents still use and need cars for work, shopping, or other activities. Many homes do not have driveways, or tenants do not have access to them. Queens is not just a bedroom community for people who work and play in Manhattan.
Queens, and the City as a whole, needs more affordable and senior housing. But we believe it cannot come at the cost of parking, which is also a necessity for many seniors and residents who need affordable housing. They have cars too.
We urge the city to rethink their proposal to eliminate parking requirements. Queens, for better or worse, is a Borough that includes a lot of drivers. And we urge residents concerned about the plan to get informed about the proposal and make their voices heard at the public hearings that are to be scheduled. Look for the times and location to be published in the Queens Tribune.