Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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NY1 For You: Drivers Give Muni-Meters Near Columbia University A Failing Grade

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It's hard enough parking in the city, but on one block in Morningside Heights near Columbia University, drivers also have to contend with broken muni-meters. NY1's Susan Jhun filed the following NY1 For You report.

For drivers who are able to find a parking space on 120th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam in Manhattan, they have to face one more problem.

"None of the meters are working. This is pretty common, though," says driver Corey Pagnotta.

"There are six muni-meters on the block and all six of them are broken. They register different messages, all freezing up or saying 'out of order,'" says driver Courtney Hooper. "I just want to be able to pay my money and park."

Drivers say the meters have been broken for months, and even though they call 311 to report it and leave notes on their window shields, they still get ticketed.

"No matter how much information I provide, with the complaint number to 311 and all of that, they still write tickets," Hooper says. "And I've had the tickets upheld, actually, when I've contested them and then had to appeal that ticket and it's always been reversed on appeal, but it's a long process to go through."

"I had to put signs on my dashboard explaining to them that the card doesn't work. Now even the quarters are not working," driver Josephine Takeall says.

But after all those steps, Takeall gets ticketed.

NY1 contacted DOT and a spokesman told NY1 the agency is currently working with utility providers to review a localized communication malfunction affecting credit card payments in the area. He went on to say DOT inspected the area last week after NY1's call and all affected meters are currently operational and accepting coin payments.

The spokesman said DOT will be conducting frequent follow-up inspections to see that the coin payments are accepted at all affected meters.

NY1 For You will continue to follow this story.

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