NYC horse-drawn carriages move inside Central Park

NEW YORK (WABC) -- People looking for a horse carriage ride in New York City must now go inside Central Park.

Carriage horse drivers decided to move Friday morning to comply with the city's new directive for them to no longer make pickups on Central Park South.

New York City officials had stressed that while Friday was slated to be the day horses should move from their longtime waiting on Central Park South to just inside the park, no summonses were going to be immediately issued. Instead, drivers and customers would be "educated" about the new pick up locations.

As the drivers moved into the park, they voiced concerns about the safety of the new pickup locations being built by the city.

Two of them, off Fifth and Seventh Avenues, did not appear to be fully completed yet, with construction clearly continuing Friday morning.

Because of that, drivers said they are not currently able to stage their horses at the Seventh Avenue location the city had identified. The drivers said they will attempt to stand as close as they can.

Supporters say this rule creates safer, more humane conditions for the animals, but critics worry that the loss of visibility will hurt business.

"We have operated on Central Park South for 160 years without incident," said Christina Hansen, a carriage driver. "There is nothing wrong where our horses were in the carriage stands that they had. They were relaxed. They were comfortable. They were safe. They were visible to passersby."

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