Horse Drawn Carriages
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The Law About Times Square and Carriage Horses
From Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages
Without getting into the actual law that governs area restrictions for the carriages, which can make your head spin, all you really have to know is this: Until 9 PM, from Monday through Friday, carriages can only work in Central Park and the streets surrounding it. After 9PM , they can go anywhere with some restrictions. Including Saturday, they are not allowed in the Times Square area until after 11:30 PM. (on Sunday it is 7PM) This area is defined as being bordered on the north by W. 57th St.; on the south by 42nd St., on the east by 7th Avenue and on the west by 9th Avenue. The law is very clear and there are no exceptions.
Take a moment to look at Map Quest for 618 West 52 Street, which is Clinton Stables. The direct route back to this stable from the park is to go west on 60th St. and down either 9th or 11th Avenue. It is not through Times Square, which would take the driver very much out of his way. The route back to all the other stables is exactly the same way.
Yet the ASPCA only tickets drivers in this area if they have passengers. When I questioned them about this, pointed out the law, which is not open to interpretation, they came back with Section: 20-381.1 Area and time restrictions (5) (c) The prohibitions contained in this section shall not be construed to apply to horse drawn cabs which are being driven, without passengers, on a direct route to and from the location at which the horse is sheltered, provided that they are driven no more than one half-hour prior to the end of any time restriction or one half-hour after the beginning of any time restriction.
The people at the ASPCA are a little weak on geography. The direct route back to the stables -- and that means ALL OF THEM - is not through Times Square. Any driver in Times Square before 11:30 PM is looking for business. It is self evident. If you see a driver in Times Square when they should not be there, please send me an e-mail - firstname.lastname@example.org. Let me know the location; time and 4-digit license plate number on the back of the carriage. Take a picture if you can. If you want to say something to the driver, that is up to you - but PLEASE gather the information first.
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