Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Pols promote app that violates zoning regulations

I'd like to share part of a press release I received yesterday:
"SpotPog – an innovative new app that allows drivers to find free and paid spots – launched in Brooklyn today with the support of elected officials and local organizations. Leaders praised SpotPog as a smart way to address the city’s parking problem, and to help improve the environment and street safety in high-traffic neighborhoods.

“Brooklyn has a serious parking problem,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams. “We need an innovative approach to help residents find spots in their own neighborhoods, or when running errands and attending local events. SpotPog has the potential to meet this mission, employing our smartphones in a smart way to help reduce traffic congestion, decrease street-level pollution, and allow for more drivers to visit our local business districts.”

“New York drivers are constantly wasting time, money and energy hunting for parking spaces,” said New York City Council Environmental Chair Donovan Richards. “Circling for parking also causes tons of preventable street-level pollution a year, creating health risks in our neighborhoods. SpotPog will help alleviate New York's parking-related problems with a free, innovative app designed to drive our communities into a healthier, safer future.”

Starting today, SpotPog users will be able to swap public street spots for free, enabling those who have downloaded the app to save time by not hunting for spots. Drivers earn credits (“Pogs”) every time they give away a free spot to another user, and those credits can then be used to claim a free space later on.

SpotPog users who own driveways will also be able to post their driveways for rent on the app. Driveway owners can set their own hourly prices and availability, creating a new parking option for the millions of city drivers who have trouble finding a space while running errands, attending events or parking in their own neighborhood. SpotPog’s technology allows driveway owners to complete transactions without even being home."

Ok, so what this basically does is

- privatize a public resource. Individual drivers will be benefiting off of something that is supposed to be available to the public. Not to mention the chaos this thing will likely cause when you have people racing to the scene of a parking space that just opened up. Plus, do we really want to encourage people to fiddle with their phones while they are driving?

- create commercial enterprises in residential zones. This app is basically an AirBnB type system for driveways. I doubt anyone wants a commercial parking lot opening up on their residential street. Believe it or not, it is illegal for a homeowner to rent out their garage or driveway to someone else. Were the Department of Finance, the IRS and NYS Department of Taxation and Finance notified of this?

Why are elected officials promoting this garbage put forth by a private company? Don't they have attorneys advising them on what's kosher and what isn't?

I think it's time for an investigation by the AG.


Anonymous said...

I don't have a so-called "smart phone"...how do I find out where the parking spots are?

Anonymous said...

a lot of times people park in residential zones to avoid the meters so it's not like it isn't being done right now. only downside is that now most homeowners won't be parking in their driveway and will use up street parking to force people to rent their driveways

Queens Crapper said...

"a lot of times people park in residential zones to avoid the meters so it's not like it isn't being done right now."

No, the point is that residential property will become defacto commercial. Your neighbors didn't move next door to a parking lot, they moved next door to a house.

Anonymous said...

Wait til they start renting out space in community driveways. What fun!

JQ said...

Is spotpog a result of this supposed STEM education?

Eric Adams has turned into quite a disappointment since his days of addressing rampant abuse in The NYPD. Now he is just a patsy for the constant cravings of the narcissistic confederacy of yuppies and hipsters in the overvalued and overpopulated section of northwest fucking Brooklyn.

These idiots obviously didn't think this through, so blinded by the overrated technology and app-based consumerism. Neighbors of people who use this service will be livid. Shit is going to get lit.

Anonymous said...

Spot on reporting/commentary.

I like how an app is their answer to a problem that would have been better solved with:

a) transit that works
b) parking garages

It costs far more to build infrastructure than an app.

Anonymous said...

Cops could use this - wait by open spots and ticket people racing to it with their cell phones in their hands.

Anonymous said...

Suppose that a SpotPog user is pulling out of a parking spot and I, an non-user, pull in right in before another SmartPog user arrives. That SmartPog user is out of luck as the spot is legally open to all.

Queens Crapper said...

To whoever posted the comment about free speech, please repost, I accidentally deleted it. I apologize. (Don't use a phone to moderate comments!)

Anonymous said...

i'll take my neighbors renting out their driveway to crazy people speeding around residential streets looking for a spot or backing up the entire length of a block to get back to a spot they saw and striking pedestrians and kids

Anonymous said...

The ability for elected government-- any elected government anywhere-- to keep up with daily free market technological developments (such as the SpotPog app) is ZERO and always will be. The TLC is still trying to deal with Uber-like car services, now three years on, as the price of taxi medallions drop monthly. Hold on for the ride folks. Embrace or be miserable.

Anonymous said...

the basic premise is simple. it's either yield management that priceline started back in the 90's with selling unsold airline seats or hotel rooms, in this case unused driveways. or giving people better service with things like a car service

Anonymous said...

"Believe it or not, it is illegal for a homeowner to rent out their garage or driveway to someone else."

I can see renting a driveway being illegal but a garage?? My garage has a Certificate of Occupancy and is a legal structure.
I can see it being illegal if it were to be used as a dwelling for human occupation but for a car?

Anonymous said...

I recently saw a fistfight occur over a parking space on Catalpa Avenue near St. Mathias church.

A guy was pulling into a spot and another car came along claiming that he saw the spot first. One word lent itself to becoming a nasty word then cursing and threats.
Several verbal exchanges led to the exchange of punches.
The cops came and both men were given summons for disorderly conduct.
No arrests. The next morning the parked cars' windshield was broken.

Anonymous said...

I'm looking forward to all the fist fights when people try to pull into a just vacated spot and a someone else tries to tell them the spot is reserved by an app user. I know I wouldn't stand for it, and I'm sure there are folks far larger and far less technically inclined than I who would quickly get violent over it.

Anonymous said...

It's almost the same as people standing in spots claiming 'their husband' is just around the corner and he'll be there momentarily. Holding parking spots in NYC is illegal, be it in the flesh or online.

Queens Crapper said...

"I can see it being illegal if it were to be used as a dwelling for human occupation but for a car?"

Commercially rented garages require a license from DCA and would change the classification of your property. You'd also be required to pay tax on that income.

Anonymous said...

What this SpotPog app needs is an easy upload to youtube feature for uploading the shouting matches and fist fights that are sure to ensue.

Jim said...

Brooklyn should do what some areas of Washington D.C. do that are even more congested. The neighborhoods are divided into sections of a few blocks. Only cars with registered resident plates for that area are allowed to park overnight. In the daytime, parking by unregistered or non-resident plates is allowed on residential streets for two hours. A ticket cop drives by scanning the plates every two hours.

Anonymous said...

Let's put thousands of false open spots on the app daily and watch the app implode because its unreliable 🛃

Anonymous said...

I have noticed that yellow school buses are now parking around closed school buildings ,weekends ,evenings ,holidays in residential zoned communities, 1-2 family .

the shadow city gov./and private bus owners/unions($22 billion of property tax )using your turf for bus terminals ?

Anonymous said...

311 was notified twice and a personal report was made to a t.e.a..no summonses were given to these yellow buses in residential zoning ????????

Anonymous said...

>What this SpotPog app needs is an easy upload to youtube feature for uploading the shouting matches and fist fights that are sure to ensue.

Hahaha, good idea. SpotPog will replace Worldstar.