It’s happened to all of us: circling for what seems like hours trying to find a parking spot near our house or the restaurant you’re going to. In some dense neighborhoods, it’s a truly epic problem. A study of New York’s Upper West Side found that in one year, residents drove 366,000 miles just looking for parking.
A new web app, ParkingAuction, hopes to fix that problem by letting people who are leaving their spots soon offer them for a price, and for people desperate for a spot to pay a few bucks for information about where, exactly, spots are. By adding market forces to the randomness of daily parking circling, the app could do wonders to do a better job setting the value of the scarce resource of parking spaces.