NYC Parking Tickets Down Sharply in 2016 – Upper East Side Leads in Tickets Again

Manhattan Households Average Over 10 Parking Tickets Each in 2016


For anyone who has experienced the woes of city car ownership, it’s quite obvious why most New Yorkers don’t have access to a car. According to the Census’ American Community Survey, only 44.8% of New York households have access to a car, and just 22.1% of Manhattan households. On top of the astronomical cost of living and having a car, New Yorkers, and Manhattanites especially, are overwhelmingly likely to be a victim of the meter maids. Using NYC’s OpenData Portal to examine calendar year 2015 and 2016, we discovered that the NYC Department of Finance issued over 10 million tickets in 2016, or about $715 million in possible revenue (before any late fees).

Issuance of all ticket types is down nearly 15% from the $846 million and 11.7 million tickets issued in 2015. Included in the 2016 figures are nearly 425,000 red light camera tickets at $50 each, as well as 1.32 million $50 tickets for speeding in a school zone, which happens to be the second most popular ticket type, just behind street cleaning. Red-light camera tickets were also down in 2016, almost 30% from 2015, when over 603,000 were issued.

In order to help renters with cars find an apartment in a neighborhood with easy parking and avoid no-go zones, the RentHop data science team focused on tickets issued to parked cars only. In addition, tickets issued to commercial vehicles, like your regular UPS driver with the stack of tickets on the dash, have been filtered out. The City of New York uses a stipulated fine program which any company with a commercial vehicle can opt-in to receive reduced fine amounts while giving up the right to contest the tickets. This promises to unfairly make certain neighborhoods appear as worse for parking when the data isn’t relevant to our target audience. We’re left with over 5.7 million tickets amounting to nearly $410 million before dreaded late fees, down bigly from the 6.98 million tickets and $497 million from 2015.

There’s Plenty of Space to Park in Staten Island


Borough Tickets per Household with Vehicle Households with Vehicle(%) Households with Vehicle(#) % of City’s Households with Vehicle % of City’s Tickets 2016 Tickets Issued (Passenger Cars) Ticket Total (Face Value)
Bronx 4.07 40.6% 196,702 14.1% 13.9% 801,406 $55,193,545
Brooklyn 4.31 43.7% 406,741 29.2% 30.4% 1,752,137 $113,154,400
Manhattan 10.60 22.1% 166,119 11.9% 30.5% 1,760,733 $149,577,840
Queens 2.80 62.4% 486,804 34.9% 23.6% 1,362,186 $85,739,100
Staten Island 0.64 83.1% 137,796 9.9% 1.5% 88,721 $6,279,670
NYC 4.14 44.8% 1,394,162 100.0% 100.0% 5,765,183 $409,944,555


Despite having just 11.9% of NYC’s households with cars, Manhattan received over 30% of the city’s tickets

We learn from the table above that most of NYC’s ticket revenue comes from Manhattan, despite having the lowest rate of households with cars. Only Staten Island has less households with vehicles (and many, many less households). A household with a car in Manhattan can expect to receive 10.6 tickets per year and pay at least $750 in fines. Brooklyn nearly ties Manhattan in tickets received, but since fines differ by area, especially Downtown Manhattan, Manhattan Police precincts will help rake in the most money for 2016.

We found that Staten Island is the place to live if you have a car and don’t want to live in New Jersey. Over 83% over households in Staten Island have a car and they average just .64 tickets per year. This may be due to enforcement or the fact that many homes in Staten Island have driveways. 62.4% of households in Queens also have access to a car and they pay their dues of 2.8 tickets per year.

The map below shows tickets broken down by police precinct 

Change how neighborhoods are ranked by selecting the corresponding buttons. Click a precinct to see more granular data about that precinct.

The city of New York issued 17.5% less tickets to passenger cars in 2016 than 2015, so to determine areas that have soaked up a higher proportion of the city’s parking enforcement attention, we adjusted the scale so that neighborhoods which increased/decreased more than 17.5% since last year are emphasized. Much of Midtown has seen a proportionate reduction in tickets, as well as Hamilton Heights and Eastern Queens.

Times Square had the highest per capita parking ticket rate, receiving 6.2 tickets for every resident in 2016. Midtown North and TriBeCa/SoHo were a pretty far off 2nd and 3rd with 2.4 and 2.1 tickets per capita, respectively.

These neighborhoods received significantly less parking tickets than last year:

  1. Queens Village Rosedale, Queens (Precinct 105) – 49,372 Tickets/$3.46 million (-35.1% from 2015 | 17.6% better than city average)
  2. Fresh Meadows / Jamaica Hills, Queens (Precinct 107) – 72,063 Tickets/$4.55 million (-32.2% from 2015 | 14.7% better than city average)
  3. St. Albans / S. Jamaica / JFK, Queens (Precinct 113) – 24,029 Tickets/$1.74 million (-31.5% from 2015 | 14% better than city average)
  4. Washington Heights South, Manhattan (Precinct 33) – 52,854 Tickets/$4.17 million (-29.3% from 2015 | 11.8% better than city average)
  5. Midtown North / Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan (Precinct 18) – 131,149 Tickets/$12.9 million (-29.1% from 2015 | 11.6% better than city average)

These neighborhoods received more tickets, or saw a decrease much less than the average of 17.5%:

  1. Stuyvesant Heights, Brooklyn (Precinct 81) – 26,809 Tickets/$1.93 million (+5% from 2015 | 22.5% worse than city average)
  2. North Shore / Stapleton, Staten Island (Precinct 120) – 36,461 Tickets/$2.55 million (+2% from 2015 | 19.5% worse than city average)
  3. TriBeCa / SoHo, Manhattan (Precinct 1) – 142,419 Tickets/$13 million (-1.5% from 2015 | 16% worse than city average)
  4. Bayside, Queens (Precinct 111) – 38,758 Tickets/$2.49 million (-3.8% from 2015 | 13.7% worse than city average)
  5. Flatiron / Stuy-town / Gramercy, Manhattan (Precinct 13) – 141,003 Tickets/$12.4 million (-5% from 2015 | 12.5% worse than city average)

The Upper East Side tops the list of highest-ticketed neighborhoods once again


Neighborhood Police Precinct Tickets Issued 2015 Ticket Value 2015 Tickets Issued 2016 Ticket Value 2016
Upper East Side 19 291,825 $24,270,520 238,338 $19,812,010
Astoria / Steinway 114 260,232 $15,036,085 219,853 $12,709,505
Flushing / College Point / Murray Hill 109 193,207 $12,341,465 165,472 $10,767,660
Flatbush / Ditmas Park 70 171,722 $10,040,165 156,849 $9,523,095
TriBeCa / SoHo 1 144,593 $13,365,750 142,419 $13,030,735

The Upper East Side took the lead in parking tickets again last year, with nearly $7 million more in tickets issued in the 19th precinct the next closest precinct. Astoria was a very close second in terms of number of tickets issued, but falls far short in fine amounts due to the higher average cost of tickets issued in Manhattan. TriBeCa / SoHo moved up from last year, showing only minor reductions in parking tickets issued, putting it among the top gainers relative to the city average.

Outer borough neighborhoods receive drastically less tickets


Neighborhood Police Precinct Tickets Issued 2015 Ticket Value 2015 Tickets Issued 2016 Ticket Value 2016
South Shore 123 9,175 $693,075 8,575 $654,815
Far Rockaway 101 22,766 $1,515,605 16,854 $1,190,340
Bloomfield / West Shore 121 21,044 $1,640,095 18,482 $1,383,540
Arverne / Broad Channel 100 22,012 $1,448,690 19,172 $1,324,135
St. Albans / S. Jamaica / JFK 113 35,066 $2,537,105 24,029 $1,738,455

Our lowest ticketed New York neighborhoods were all located in Staten Island and Eastern Queens. The South Shore ranked as the lowest ticketed precinct with just 8,575 tickets amounting to $654,815 before any inevitable late fees. That’s less than 0.1 tickets per capita, It’s safe to assume that there are more driveways available in these areas, allowing for much more convenient parking. Staten Island is also one of the fastest growing boroughs with big developments expected over the next decade, so this may not last.

Is enforcement down? Or maybe people are just driving better?

All this great news for drivers is sure to impact the budget for the city. De Blasio is proposing massive budget increases to gear up for a potentially unhealthy relationship with the president. We expect tickets to go up in the next year as this revenue drop is recognized, and costs for securing Trump Tower pile up.

Convenient parking is just one of the many things people may look for when searching for a new apartment. RentHop’s search filters can help you find an apartment that meets all the requirements for your new home. Browse our over 100,000 current listings here Renthop New York City Apartment Rentals.

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