'Waze of parking' comes to Baltimore - Technical.ly Baltimore

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Jan. 31, 2020 7:53 am

‘Waze of parking’ comes to Baltimore

SpotAngels uses crowdsourced data to help find open spots, and alerts drivers to restrictions. It's partnering with Parking Authority of Baltimore City as it expands to Baltimore.
Looking for a spot?

Looking for a spot?

(Photo by Flickr user Dean Hochman, used under a Creative Commons license)

Apps to help with parking are always of interest in Baltimore, given the prospect of saving the time it takes to search for a spot in congested areas, and maybe even avoid a ticket.

Now the city’s parking authority is teaming up to bring an app to the city that uses crowdsourced data to map available spaces for both on-street and off-street parking, as well as restrictions.

SpotAngels is partnering with the Parking Authority of Baltimore City (PABC) to introduce the free app in the city.

“Between visitors and residents, Baltimore hosts close to 30+ million people a year,” SpotAngels VP Maxwell Mickey said in a statement. “That is a lot of people and a lot of cars! We are looking forward to helping them quickly navigate the City.”

The app lets users search for parking spaces near a destination, and provides info such as prices, time limits and restrictions. It also shows hours and rates for parking meters and parking garages.

The partnership includes data: To inform the app, PABC provided public data such as parking meters, on-street parking restrictions and city-owned garages. This is designed to help avoid tickets that come with residential parking zones and meters.

For an app that’s been dubbed the “Waze of parking,” an even more important public-powered contribution may come from citizens themselves. The app can show when a space is freed up. With the data being crowdsourced, that means users provide the updates, and more data means more spots showing up. The company also analyzes patterns to offer recommendations on where a spot is likely to open up.

“This new partnership with Spot Angels will bring relief to residents and visitors alike as they travel across and around our city,” Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young said in a statement. “I will always support innovative ideas and partnerships that benefit the residents of Baltimore, especially when those ideas aim to save our residents time and money.”

Founded in 2014, San Francisco-based SpotAngels raised $2.3 million from investors including Google Maps cofounder Lars Rasmussen. The app has entered 35 cities, including New York, D.C., Chicago and Philly.

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