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How DOT Violations Impact Your Properties

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Posted By Kristen Hariton

While the DOT’s main jurisdiction is on the streets, owners and managers should be aware of how the Department of Transportation regulates what goes on around and inside your buildings.

New York City is working their way through ECB and OATH-associated agencies, implementing new penalty schedules that give agencies greater control over language and recommended penalty amounts. Next up on the list of new penalty schedules is the Department of Transportation, in effect as of October 1st. With that said, we thought it’d be the perfect time to share the new penalty schedule and review exactly how different kinds of DOT violations impact your properties.

What kinds of DOT violations are issued frequently?

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A number of DOT violations are issued for interfering with the regular flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic. Common ones are failing to get proper permits or illegally opening the street. Items illegally stored on the street (dumpsters, construction materials, etc.), failure to erect specific construction street protection, and bicycle-related violations also fall under the DOT’s umbrella.

How do they impact my buildings?

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While named respondents for DOT violations are sometimes issued to parties separate from building owners and managers, these infractions can still impact operations around and adjacent to your building. Construction may be halted depending on specific violations, impacting your ongoing work.  In addition, any illegally blocked streets or sidewalks can affect traffic to and from your property. It’s worth knowing if certain parties are frequently being cited for DOT violations near your building so you can prevent future infractions or minimize any negative impact.

What about sidewalk violations?

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Unlike some types of DOT infractions, sidewalk violations have a direct impact on a building and its owners. While sidewalk violations are issued by the DOT, they’re not associated with ECB/OATH hearings. Sidewalk violations have a separate resolution process that , if uncorrected, may result in forced repair and tax liens.

To find out more about sidewalk violations and how to clear them, check out SiteCompli’s Sidewalk Violation FAQs.

What’s the new penalty schedule?

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You can check out the DOT’s new penalty schedule here. Penalties range from $100 to $20,000 for the most serious offenses.

BONUS…Are there new rules for bicycles in office buildings?

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The DOT amended the rule on bicycles in office buildings this summer, with the changes set to take place on November 4th.

If you’re not familiar with the initial rule, here are the basics: tenants or sub-tenants can file a Bicycle Access Request with their office building and the DOT (nyc.gov/bikesinbuildings). A Plan must then be implemented within 30 days of the request. The plan includes information about entry and exit points and pathways for cyclists, route to the elevator, and freight elevator operational hours. Owners and managers may also apply for an Exception in specific cases.

The new rules highlight specific details about the freight elevator and freight access. Owners must also update their required posting to include language about the Plan’s compliance with applicable laws and that tenants or subtenants can get a copy of the Plan upon request. Finally, language is included about foldable bicycle access on passenger cars, emergency restrictions, and restrictions in the case of a related violation.

Kristen Hariton

Kristen Hariton is the Product Marketing Strategist at SiteCompli. A member of the SiteCompli team since March 2013, Kristen has learned more about compliance and property operations than she ever thought possible. When she's not sharing the latest industry trends, changes, and updates, she's planning her next adventure to Walt Disney World.

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