Lights, camera, aggravation.
With a recent spike in film shoots causing a heap of Bay Ridge drivers parking frustration, locals are airing out their concerns about the inconvenience and one Brooklyn pol is gearing up to introduce legislation that might alleviate the problem.
“This neighborhood is starving for parking spots,” one resident said during the public session at the October Community Board 10 meeting. “People sometimes have to go around for an hour to find a parking space. It’s unconscionable that they should take 10 to 12 blocks of parking away from this neighborhood.”
“They” were the producers of “Blue Bloods,” who took over several blocks in the vicinity of St. Patrick’s Church for a day in October.
Other critically acclaimed shows like “The Blacklist” and “Madam Secretary,” along with NBC’s brand new, “Shades of Blue”—starring Jennifer Lopez and Ray Liotta — and HBO’s “The Deuce”—starring James Franco and Maggie Gyllenhaal (currently in production) — have all filmed in southwest Brooklyn in recent years, taking up parking spaces on several streets and blocks in the process.
“I think they really have to consider the impact on local communities,” said CB 10 District Manager Josephine Beckmann about the film crews. “[They] should really tighten it to a specific area. I find that that’s most often the complaint – that film companies exceed what is permitted, and that’s what really impacts us. I think the city, [along with] the film companies, really needs to understand the impact the loss of parking has on the community.”
One Brooklyn pol has a plan to ease the burden. Assemblymember Joseph Lentol, who represents parts of northern Brooklyn, is in the process of introducing a bill that would suspend alternate side parking rules within a six-block radius on the days of permitted film shoots.
“While I wholeheartedly support filming and the great economic benefits it brings to our state, I must ensure that my constituents’ quality of life is not adversely affected,” said Lentol. “This is a simple, temporary solution that will ease the tension that continues to build between residents and the filming industry.”
According to Lentol’s office, this legislation seeks to “balance the requirements of an important industry” while meeting the needs of local residents by temporarily suspending alternate side parking rules when filming occurs.”
“Some film shoots reserve parking along multiple city blocks for days at a time. Couple this with alternate side parking rules that are in effect in some New York City neighborhoods for four days per week and you have a parking disaster,” Lentol said.