Thursday, August 6, 2015
Green taxis hogging up parking in Astoria
What’s going on is a turf battle for parking spaces that are on the public streets. The taxis want the spaces so they can get the customers coming off the subway. But the businesses say they need these spaces for their customers.
“This has become a free taxi stand”, says Alfred Hansen, the manager of Grand Wine and Liquors. The green cabs line up outside his store next to the 30th street N and Q subway stop and park up and down the block, where it’s one hour meter parking. Hansen says the green taxis often don’t pay the meter and take up the spaces customers need to park and shop.
I spoke with a number of green taxi owners who say they usually pay the meter, but when I checked, very few had any receipts on their dashboards. The drivers insist they do pay and say they have a right to these public spaces, as any other vehicles has.
But some of the local businesses say the green cabs are monopolizing the spaces. When one pulls away with a fare, another is waiting to take its place. The manager of the local supermarket says “ there’s no parking. It’s very congested here. It’s not fair to the customers who want to shop.