Have you ever circled around the North End neighborhood looking for a parking spot? Ever have your car towed due to street cleaning? A new App designed by a North End resident aims to help neighbors find parking and avoid getting their car towed.
Coming home from long days in the office and circling the neighborhood for a parking spot for over 30 minutes was not something that Alex Shvartz enjoyed. Even when he managed to squeeze his car into a spot, he realized that street cleaning was coming the following morning and the street would need to be clear by 8 a.m. After several times of paying hundreds of dollars to pay the ticket and get his car back after being towed, Shvartz started thinking of ways to aid this problem.
Using his personal funds and seeking outside help for development, “ParkWise North End” was born … an app to help North End residents park on the tight neighborhood streets, while also keeping tabs on street cleaning and event restrictions.
So, how does the application work? Using a map of the North End with highlighted streets, a “leaving soon” button is in place for people to notify other residents that they are leaving their spot soon. Whether you tap the “leaving soon” button 1 minute or 30 minutes prior to leaving, it will notify users at your car’s location that this spot will soon be open. From there, the app is run on a “pass it on” principal.
Once a user leaves his or her spot, the application will put a “free spot” sign at the spot so users can see the open space that is available for parking. If the free spot gets taken by another user, the “free spot” sign will immediately disappear. The “free spot” signal will slowly disappear after being open for 15 to 30 minutes to assume a non app user took the spot.
Has it been a few days and you can’t remember the street where you parked? No problem, the app also memorizes where your car is parked.
Drivers can also search and navigate on a street to street basis to see the street cleaning schedule for each individual street.
Unlike another app, Haystack, that was recently banned, you cannot sell or hold your spot. “I believe it is not fair or legal. It’s first come first served. The most you can get is a thank you and a smile from your neighbor,” says Shvartz. “Which I believe worth the hassle of pressing one button.”
Check out the live online parking map at NorthEndParking.com.