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Private Ways

I recently found out that the parking area that I am renting a spot to park my vehicle on is a private way. Can the abuters (sp?) of this property legally charge anyone to park there?
I spoke with the assessor for the City of Boston and was informed that no one is paying property taxes on the land as it is a private way and that if they are charging anyone to park there it is illegal. Just looking for clarification on this matter.
Also can a private way be purchased?

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Submitted Fri, 11/06/2015 - 16:11

Private ways are roads that are not maintained or accepted by the state or municipality as part of the public road system. As a result the city/town/state has no authority or responsibility to maintain the road or ticket those that park on it. While abutters to a private way cannot block off the street to travel by the public, they had a right to block it off to parking from the public. This happens all the time in the North End, small beach communities, and sub-developments. The abutter can charge you for the right to park in front of their property. They can also put up resident only signs or no parking signs. While you cannot get a ticket for parking there against the resident's wishes, they can have you towed for trespassing. It would be the same as parking in someone else's driveway. They can sell you a license to use that area, but you have no right to it. The assessor is right in that they don't pay property taxes on it, however they are responsible for maintaining the cost to repair and pave it.



Hi David,

Thank you for the response to my original question.

The question that I have now is can a private way be purchased and if so how does one find out who actually owns it?

Best Regards,
Scott


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