“Financial problems being experienced by its service provider led us to conclude that we must suspend this payment option,” said PPA Executive Director Clarena Toslon in a press release published Tuesday.
The app, which had 20,000 active users in Philly, was first announced in the summer of 2015. The app was made by an Israeli company called Pango Parking, which later opened a Philadelphia office (at coworking space Pipeline) as part of the city contract. Then, in October 2016, the company sold to multinational parking app company Parking by Phone.
At the time the deal for the app’s Philly deployment went down, the company had the blessing of former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, who joined Pango Parking’s advisory board back in 2011. (Curiously, Rendell was also on the board of another startup that suddenly went under: Brand.com.) According to city records, the firm spent close to $5,000 lobbying both City Council and the PPA in 2012, as we reported in 2015.
And as Philly Twitter mourns the now defunct the mobile app, the PPA is currently organizing a request for for proposals (RFP) for a new parking app, which is expected to go live by the end of the week, but motorists are unlikely to see a replacement be put swiftly in place.
“The selection and implementation process may take several months to complete,” the agency said in a press release.