As of today, a smoking ban goes into effect at New York City parks, beaches and boardwalks, public golf courses, sports stadia grounds, and pedestrian plazas such as those at Times Square and Herald Square. The ban will be enforced by your nieghbors. “We expect that New Yorkers will ask people to follow the law and stop smoking,” reads the parks department’s website. If someone asks you to stop smoking and you don’t, they can call 311 or go get a grown-up, who might have the authority to fine you $50.
There are, though, some exceptions to this smoking ban.
You may still smoke on the following city properties:
+ Sidewalks outside parks, including sidewalks that form the perimeter of parks.
+ The parking lots of all Parks properties.
+ Median strips (“even though medians in the middle of large streets such as Broadway are under the jurisdiction of Parks, they are mainly used to cross the street so smoking by pedestrians would be permitted to continue in these areas.”)
Also, the ban does not apply to state parks, which means you can still smoke in the following Brooklyn locations:
+ East River State Park in Williamsburg
+ Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park in DUMBO
+ Floyd Bennett Field in Marine Park
The jury was out briefly on Brooklyn Bridge Park. It “isn’t a state park, though it’s not exactly a city park, either,” reports Brooklyn Heights blog. “At least, it’s not under the jurisdiction of the City Parks Department, and has its own rules, though it tries to keep them in conformity with rules applying to city parks. So, we called the Park’s offices, and spoke with spokesperson Ellen Ryan, who said it was BBPC’s intent to amend its rules to comply with the city park rules on smoking. Park personnel, she said, will be instructed to enforce the no-smoking rule.”
So, forget what Gothamist said.