Mount Eden residents say illegal car repairs are taking away parking spaces; DSNY says it's taking action
Residents in one Mount Eden neighborhood say illegal car repairs being made in the street are making it difficult for them to find parking.
They say the abandoned and badly damaged cars have been sitting in the same spot for several months. They add that their complaints to the city about it are being ignored.
They say cars on jacks, inoperable and abandoned vehicles are taking up all of the parking spaces all along Nelson Avenue and West 172nd Street.
"People who use those cars as blockage for parking spots for people who actually want to park their car," said resident Dennis Bonner. He said this has been the scene in his neighborhood for two years.
"It's pretty much a mechanic's spot and it shouldn't be that in this area," Bonner adds, but there is no licensed auto repair shop on the residential block.
Bonner said he has made complaints to 311 about the abandoned cars, most of which he said do not have license plates.
"When I walk through that area, all I see is the same thing that I've made complaints on," he said.
After News 12 contacted the Department of Sanitation about Bonner's complaints on Friday afternoon, it said crews would visit the street that night.
DSNY provided News 12 with photos and explained that they found what appeared to be mechanics working on vehicles in the street. DSNY said they informed them that it was illegal, and they needed to move their operations immediately.
Two cars were also tagged for removal. On Sunday, however, a News 12 crew still saw mechanics continuing their work.
"If they are taking away these cars and towing these cars, there are more cars coming, and for me, honestly, I don't see it happening with them taking the cars and towing them," Bonner said. He said that he is speaking out because he now worries for the safety of his neighborhood.
"It's just a lot of foul play that shouldn't be in that area," he added. Bonner said the NYPD and DSNY need to take residents' concerns seriously.
"I think a lot of people are not being heard because they are using 311 as a resource, but they're having to go above them because it seems like their cases are being closed or they're just not being heard, and I want to be," Bonner said.
News 12 reached out to the Department of Sanitation, and it said it can only tow away vehicles if they meet three requirements: If they have no license plates, damage equating to a value less than $1,250 and if they go unclaimed after being tagged.
DSNY added that it is scheduled to return to the area on Monday to ensure cleanliness and compliance.