New Street Cleaners Could End Alternate Side Parking

Assemblyman Yoni Hikind has proposed that the New York City Department of Sanitation replace their large sweeper trucks with smaller, mobile vacuum units that are capable of cleaning the streets and could eliminate the need for alternate side of the street parking.

From VIN News by Sandy Eller:

Criticized by some for his lack of formal governmental experience, a city council candidate is turning the tables on his detractors by challenging a policy enacted over sixty years ago to potentially solve several problems that have long plagued Brooklyn residents.

A proposal introduced Tuessday by Yoni Hikind pinpointed alternate side of the street parking as a major source of congestion and parking woes in the city’s 44th District.

Originally introduced by the Department of Sanitation in the 1950s to give large mechanized street sweepers an opportunity to clean city roadways, the policy forces drivers to relocate their parked vehicles at certain times on designated days and creates significant hardships in an area where parking is already difficult to find.

The solution according to Hikind?

Replacing the Department of Sanitation’s large sweeper trucks with smaller, mobile vacuum units that are capable of cleaning the streets and could eliminate the need for alternate side of the street parking.

“This is an idea that almost kills four birds with one stone,” Hikind told VIN News.  “Using state of the art efficient street vacuumers doesn’t require drivers to move their cars, potentially eliminates traffic congestion, restores parking availability during peak hours and reduces unfair penalties on citizens.”

Hikind said that the new generation of vacuums are already in use in Baltimore, Atlantic City, Brussels, Paris and Toronto where they are doing a better job of cleaning streets than their decades-old predecessors.

According to Madvac, a manufacturer of compact sweepers and vacuums, the machines are also in use in several other locations including Bridgeport, Connecticut, Woodbridge Township, New Jersey, Austin, Texas and Keane, New Hampshire.

“I would love to be able to have a pilot program in our area,” said Hikind.  “This could be a game changer.”

Hikind said that he has gotten positive feedback from a letter he sent to Department of Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg describing the district’s continued growth and his proposed Cleaner Streets plan.

The Department of Sanitation did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the matter.

Hikind said his plan came about through conversations with area residents.

“Since day one I have described my candidacy as a job interview and I have been walking the streets asking people what they would want me to do to improve their lives,” said Hikind.  “The most common things I hear about are daily life issues, like traffic.”

Researching how other cities have coped with congestion problems, Hikind came across street vacuums that promote cleanliness without exacerbating traffic conditions.  The idea is just one of many he hopes to implement that challenges the status quo in order to better the lives of district residents.

“It’s not only elected officials who can come up with good ideas,” said Hikind.

“Citizens can be extremely helpful in solving the problems we face in our day to day lives. Government can get stale at times and when it comes to problem solving sometimes you need to think out of the box.  We owe it to our community to continue pushing the envelope and I have every reason to believe that this can make a difference in people’s lives.”​


  • Missing the Point

    The whole point of alternate side parking is to keep the cars moving every few days and generate revenue for the City. Cleaning the streets is just an excuse to accomplish this. It is irrelevant.

  • CH resident

    How noble, but how naïve
    Does anyone think that the city will get rid of the alternate side parking, and therefore a huge cash cow of tickets, etc?
    Yoni Hikind may be correct, but definitely not politically saavy

    • oren

      yes, that is a very good point. thats probably how the street cleaning started in the first place, to increase revenue for the city….and the city’s admins

  • tickets

    that would be great but they will never do it. the revenue they would loose over parking tickets is something they wont give up. and if you noticed there is an ongoing systematic agenda to take away spots. and to take a lot of lanes to turn on (Ocean pkway) proposed on EP. its a brilliant idea and it would be fabulous. but don’t hold your breath

  • Driver

    Eliminating alternate side of the street parking does not work in congested areas. Drivers leave cars in spots indefinitely worsening the overall lack of parking spaces.

  • good idea but details need to be worked out

    It would be good if we can eliminate ASP rules. The problem however would be with people who end up storing an entire fleet of cars and/or trucks on the street, never having to move them. It would still be the same situation where regular people can’t find a place to park their car.

  • yeah right

    Not gonna happen, i vie a few hundred per year for those tickets, why would the city ever get rid of that?

  • moshe der g

    well it will create another major issue

    people will park a old car and never move it
    like rental car companies..and others

    taking away parking for all

    bad idea

  • zalman

    To all those worrying about people parking old cars indefinitely, this is easily solvable with a law that no single car may occupy the same parking spot for more than 2 weeks (a special permit can be obtained for up to a month, if you’re going on an extended vacation, etc.)

    Anyone who notices a car violating this law can report it and have it towed.

  • talking sense

    In California there is a law that you can’t have a car parked in the same spot for 72 hours otherwise you get a ticket.

  • bbb

    something has to change though. it really affects people negatively, quality of life is a huge issue here

  • People already do work to get PA

    To “hire the homeless,”
    People on Public Assistance already do that. It’s called WEP (work experience program) and Back to Work. They also hire some people on PA to work in the Parks Department. They make you work for the benefits, believe me. Nothing is given for free. You don’t need to worry, they make poor people work for their entitlements.