Early this year, Mayor De Blasio released an updated set of Central Park horse carriage proposals, which have just been approved by a judge. The new laws limit five locations within Central Park as horse carriage pick up spots, in order to limit the interactions horses have with vehicle traffic. These new laws will go into effect on February 15th, 2019.
Here’s a statement from the group’s executive director, Edita Birnkrant:
“By shifting the hackline locations into the shaded entrances of Central Park, carriage horses will be subjected to less heat and humidity throughout the summer and will no longer have to contend with cars and their exhaust traveling right next to them. Indeed, with the new hackline locations, horses, pedestrians and motorists will all be in a safer environment with less chance of a crash and horse collapse.”
?Early Valentine for NYC carriage horses! The horse pickup/drop-off areas will officially being moved OUT of 59th St traffic and into car-free Central Park on Friday, Feb 15th! Huge thanks to all the NYCLASS supporters who helped make it happen! Activism works! @kathynajimy pic.twitter.com/Qi3AYtALM7
— NYCLASS (@nyclass) February 13, 2019
The original report also stated that operators must display visible lights while operating between sunset and sunrise. Lights in the front must be white or yellow, and lights in the rear must be red. The report also specified that the lights must be visible from 200 feet in either direction.
An additional update to the report stated that the Commissioner of Parks and Recreation may temporarily relocate or suspend horse drawn cab passenger boarding areas if and when there are “exceptional circumstances”. Examples of these circumstances include parades, construction, or heavy pedestrian traffic. Should these suspensions occur, horse drawn carriages would be relocated to other areas within Central Park.
Not surprisingly, there has been a lot of pushback from horse carriage operators, who say their businesses will suffer since they won’t be in public view. They have stated that they plan to file an appeal.
Last summer, De Blasio also created new rules to limit cars from Central Park (excluding those using the cross-town roads).Join our newsletter for more local updates!