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Friday, May 20, 2022

Grocery app Gopuff flouts traffic laws by offering snacks in NYC

New Yorkers’ love-hate relationship with increasingly grocery delivery apps is heating up as one of the biggest The Post has learned that it has started using cars in addition to bicycles and scooters.

Deep-pocket startup Gopuff is on a hiring binge to recruit car-drive delivery workers, even as traffic slows as overcrowding in the city slows down — and some locals complain of being idle and double- Parked delivery cars are “ruining” their “quality”. of life.”

On the Upper East Side, Gopuff drivers regularly sit in their cars on Lexington Avenue between East 89th and East 90th Streets in their cars for up to 30 minutes at a time, neighbors say.

The same unmarked cars are repeatedly parked in front of a residential building and shops while drivers wait to deliver packages – but the space is zoned for commercial vehicle stops and deliveries, complain neighbors. Cars that pick up Gopuff don’t have the required commercial license plates, locals complain.

Neighbors say the drivers also enter through the store’s employee entrance, indicating they are not customers.

Gopf told The Post that it uses cars for delivery in outlying cities but said that “ordering by car in Manhattan violates our expectations.”

1349 Lexington Ave. Marco Bottarelli, who lives in front of the store in the U.S., opposes Gopf’s claim.

“They’re driving around in their cars with their music,” Bottarelli told The Post in reference to the Gopuff drivers. “And if we need to park in front of our building for a few minutes there’s no room for us.”

“They’re walking around in their cars with their music,” Carnegie Hill resident Marco Bottarelli told Gopuff
William C. Lopez/NYPOST

Local traders are also fed up with this situation.

“Plumbers, food vendors and other trade workers who have proper plates can’t park in front of the businesses they are servicing because of these cars,” said John Mikaltek, who owns a health food store. , called Food Liberation on the Block. ,

Neighbors say Gopf has used cars in New York since at least February, when Carnegie Hill City Council member Julie Menin sent a letter to her co-founders and CEOs, Rafael Ilyishayev and Yakir Gola, which complained that “Gopf delivery vehicles have been double parked for long periods of time, trapping residents’ cars until delivery drivers finally arrive to move their vehicles.”

Gopf told Menin that he would review the car’s complaints.

gopf
Gopf drivers are parking in place of commercial vehicles despite not having suitable plates.
William C. Lopez/NYPOST

“It’s important to Gopf that we be good neighbors,” Gopf said. “This involves listening to and working with our neighbors to address any concerns they may have — something we do on a regular basis.”

Menin has submitted a legislative request to regulate the industry through the Department of Consumer Affairs, which would issue licenses to these businesses.

“You can’t have unlicensed cars that take over blocks and neighborhoods without any regulation,” Menin told The Post.

The news comes after months of complaints from neighbors and local politicians about the violation of traffic rules by delivery workers on electric bikes and scooters, The Post reported. Menin said a delivery driver riding a moped on the sidewalk nearly crushed him and his three-year-old daughter.

Yakir Gola, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Gopuff
Carnegie Hill City Council member Julie Menin sent a letter to Gopuff co-founder and CEO Yakir Gola (pictured) and Rafael Ilyshayev complaining about the delivery vehicles.
AFP via Getty Images

Gopf’s previously unreported use of cars in New York City has been under so much radar that one of the industry’s biggest critics, City Councilmember Gail Brewer, was unaware it was using drivers.

“If Gopf is using cars for delivery, they are adding to congestion and pollution,” Brewer told The Post, adding that Gopf and other startups “come into the city and out of our neighborhood while complying with local laws. Accused of taking out whatever they can.”

Over the past week, Gopuff has posted listings for delivery drivers to online job boards, which include Manhattan’s Lower East Side, NoHo, Upper West Side and Seaport, as well as specific New York neighborhoods such as Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens.

Gopf insisted to The Post that it was not actually hiring drivers in Manhattan and that the ads were meant to attract bike couriers.

gopf
Gopuff provides fast delivery of groceries and other household items.
Courtesy of Gopuff

The listing states that drivers must be at least 21 years of age and have their own vehicles with proof of insurance.

Fellow grocery delivery apps Gorilla, Getir and Joker all confirmed to The Post that they never use cars for delivery in New York.

Sarah Kaufman, a transit specialist and professor at New York University’s Rudin Center for Transportation, said she was stunned by the decision to use cars for delivery in traffic-filled Manhattan.

Kaufman told The Post, “I’m frankly surprised that they find it more efficient to use a car, especially in Manhattan, than to use other means of transportation, because I think they were at the time.” Spending most of my time in traffic.” “Adding cars to the streets of New York City is the last thing we want to do right now, so I’m disappointed to hear that this is happening.”

But Briton Ladd, a retail consultant who works with fast delivery companies including Gopuff, said switching to car delivery could help the company cut costs amid pressure from investors.

Delivering multiple orders with one driver will increase delivery times for Gopuff customers, especially in overcrowded areas like the Lower East Side, Ladd said, adding that doing multiple deliveries with one vehicle means lower labor costs. According to Ladd, a single driver can handle multiple deliveries at the same time, while bike couriers are more limited in what they can carry.

“The model is broken,” the consultant said in reference to delivery apps that rely on bike and scooter couriers. “Gopf is simply experimenting with changing the model in an effort to reduce its cost.”

gopf
“GoPF is experimenting with changing the model in an effort to reduce its costs,” said retail consultant Brittain Ladd.
William C. Lopez/NYPOST

Gopf’s shift to drivers comes weeks after the company laid off hundreds of employees in an effort to cut costs amid the economic downturn, making it difficult for unprofitable tech firms to raise money.

Publicly traded companies like Doordarshan and Grubhub parent Just Eat Takeaway have seen their stock prices fall by 55% or more so far this year, increasing pressure on private delivery apps like Gopuff to justify their valuations. has gone. Ladd said the change for drivers could be designed to help pacify “impatient” investors who want the company to cut additional costs.

Gopuff previously raised funds in July 2021 at a valuation of $15 billion, but has since seen its valuation on the secondary market tank, The Post exclusively reported in March.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
World Nation News is a digital news portal website. Which provides important and latest breaking news updates to our audience in an effective and efficient ways, like world’s top stories, entertainment, sports, technology and much more news.
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