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Reader says why pay to park in Ridgewood when I can Park for Free in Other Towns ?


I go to Glen Rock to eat, get a haircut, etc., I park, I pay nothing. I go to Midland Park to the hardware store or the shoe repair shop or others or to eat, I park, I pay nothing. I go to Wyckoff to shop or eat or go to the bakery, I park, I pay nothing. I go to Allendale to shop or eat, I park, I pay nothing. I go to Hawthorne for whatever (including, most often, the movie theater, but also restaurants and shops), I park, I pay nothing, and I don’t worry that the meter will expire before the movie is over, because there isn’t one. I go to Waldwick to the hardware store or to shop or eat, I park, I pay nothing. I go to Ramsey to shop or eat or go to the movies (two different ones), I park, I pay nothing, ditto re: worrying about meter expiring because there isn’t one. That’s not to mention free parking at Route 17 stores, strip malls, and bigger malls, and we won’t even mention the internet (can’t eat lunch or get a haircut there).

What is wrong with this picture? Ridgewood, my own town, is not so special that it’s worth paying so much to park and (more important) looking at my watch and worrying about risking a ticket, which we’ve been assured will soon be increased in price and monitored intensely.

Just no. Sorry. I am frankly embarrassed by this entire thing. We don’t need a garage and we are already paying too much to park. Entire project was a waste of time and resources and will only get worse. Even more distressing is that it’s not going to work. Could end up ripping the whole thing out just as the one-lane underpass road/suicide bike lane will eventually be replaced by the two lanes we had before.

6 thoughts on “Reader says why pay to park in Ridgewood when I can Park for Free in Other Towns ?

  1. Sounds like you do not spend much time in your town so why bother to complain at all.

  2. Will you please stop with all this common sense stuff?

    By the time it becomes factually accurate that what you say is true, the people that pressed ahead with the garage will be long gone.

  3. 11:57, you are correct. But that was not always the case; I was driven to it (as it were). I used to get my hair cut in town, for example, but the meters drove me crazy. Much more relaxing not to have to think about it. I used to shop more in town, years ago, when we had a hardware store, Woolworth, Drapkin’s, cute boutiques, and much more; all gone. Other towns’ post offices make it easy to park and get in and out. The last straw was shrinking the underpass lanes, even adding a completely unnecessary and distracting electronic sign. At that point I gave up on attempting to drive under the train tracks unless it was absolutely necessary.

  4. Even if parking were free, the shopping stores would never return. Every suburban downtown in America is the same, consisting of a few banks, cafes, restaurants, etc. The banks will be the next to disappear as banking moves more and more to online. Many will say that they will not miss the banks, but banks have been great at paying rents and taxes. The garage is a complete waste of resources. Like most things any government does, its projects are based upon a need that once existed, but by the time all the discussions and planning has been done, that need has passed. Even if that need still exists, which it doesn’t, people will not use it. There’s a lot of driving psychology involved in deciding where to park, which includes deciding not to park at all if it appears too onerous. We see that psychology already, with people complaining of there not being a parking spot. What they really mean is that they can’t park on the street on the same black as the restaurant they want to visit. They are not prepared to walk 2-3 blocks. Now, do you really think these same people are going to park on the 2rd or 3rd floor of a garage, pay, and then walk to their restaurant? The last time I looked, there were plenty of other good restaurants with easy and free parking all over Bergen County.

  5. The referendum was an Olympic sized Vote of No confidence..they should resign and we pay them out of money’s due thru end of term ..less damage..cut the damages..start a rebuild vision ..lets hear what new and known candidates platform are..lets not wait..out with them all

  6. The honoraria for being on our council are dismal. (Pension points are different.) The mayor gets $5,000 a year and the other four get $3,000 a year. It probably barely pays for gas, dry cleaning, etc.

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