Unmarked Addresses Cause Nuisance in Manhattan

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer hopes to stop the confusion among residents, tourists, and emergency workers who have a hard time finding an address or location in the city.

    Stringer released a study today confirming that approximately 40 percent of locations along the busiest corridors in Manhattan do not display their street numbers externally. 

    "Right now, finding a street address on even our busiest roads can be aggravating, and even worse, can waste valuable time in the event of an emergency," said Stringer. 

    Among the 1,837 locations surveyed, 729 were unmarked. 

    The City's Administrative Code states that building owners are required to display their house numbers so that they can be seen from the sidewalk.  Each Borough President had the authority to enforce rules about size and placement. 

    "We want to make it easier for everyone," said Stringer during a press conference held at Bryant Park, one of the sample corridor areas. 

    Of all 13 street segments, 8th Ave. between 42nd and 59th St., had the highest percentage of addresses without labels at 58 percent. At the heart of midtown, this area is frequented by many tourists.

    "When a building doesn't have a legible street number, it not only means incovenience," Assemblyman Richard N. Gottfried said in a statement. "If ambulance crews, firefighters, or police can't quickly find the right building, lives can be lost."

    To rectify the issue, Stringer is proposing a pass in legislation that will mandate an address number be on all doors for residences and business.  The Department of Sanitation has a track record of aiding other agencies with the enforcement of policies, Stringer hopes that the DOS can be given powers to enforce these regulations as well. 

    Dana Lassiter, a resident in the borough, can't remember the last time she saw or even used a building number to find a location. 

    "It's no use giving building numbers," said Lassiter. "I just use street and avenue directions and do the best with that."

    Stringer hopes that with these findings a change can be put into full gear as soon as possible.

    "The lackadaisical policy regarding building addresses in this borough raises questions about public safety and quality of life," said Stringer.