De Blasio’s Push to Isolate Horse Carriages Pickups to Central Park is Put on Hold

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New York City’s yearlong battle over what to do with horse carriages is facing another roadblock.

The State Supreme Court has filed an injunction on a Mayor Bill de Blasio push to move horse carriages inside Central Park for passenger pickups and drop offs, City Hall and a spokesperson for the horse carriage industry confirmed Monday evening.

The spokesperson said the mayor cannot enact the proposal until at least a November 8 hearing, when the city has to provide data and probable cause for the changes.

“This Administration cares about the well-being of horses, and we will defend the final rule when it is published in the City Record. This proposed rule would simply change the areas where passengers can get on or off horse carriages in Central Park, and limit horses’ interaction and potential conflict with vehicular traffic,” City Hall said in a statement.

The proposal, which de Blasio announced in late-August, calls for horse carriages to be allowed to pick up rides only at five locations inside Central Park.


Courtney Gross


The map of proposed new pick up locations (seen here in yellow) for Central Park horse carriages.

De Blasio has tried to regulate the carriage industry before. In 2013, he promised to ban the carriages on Day One of his administration, calling them inhumane.


In 2016, the City Council, at the mayor’s urging, considered regulating the industry once more, negotiating with the drivers’ union as well. That failed, too.

The council’s approval would not have been required for the latest proposal, which the anti-carriage group known as NYCLASS applauded. The group’s founders are big de Blasio donors. Because of that, his motivation to get rid of the horses has always been questioned.

The city had promised to get some public input on this latest proposal this month.

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