App lets you auction your San Francisco parking spot


I wonder if this will create a new class of professional parkers who circle downtown looking for great spots just to sell them to the highest bidder. Yeah, that’s what we need: more traffic and parked cars clogging up the city.


Exactly what I was thinking… reminds me of professional ticket scalpers.


In other news, there’s a new app that let’s you summon cash-carrying rich people in nice cars to whatever secluded side street your crew prefers.


my view of parking strata:
1-wealthy, have driver, ignorant of parking issues just how long it takes for holding pattern driver to pick them up
2-Lexus/BMW owning working pros (target for app), still drives self
3-middle class, occasional parker, mostly transfers to public transit or has a bicycle racked on car
4-university educated, lives inside car thanks to rent prices and part-timing of economy, has to drive to Oakland to actually sleep in car


You win Sir!

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A new mobile app called Monkeyparking allows people in San Francisco with good parking spots to auction them off when they’re ready to leave, permitting circling rich people to engage in excitingly dangerous class warfare by bidding on spaces with their phones while they drive.

Is it just me or does this sound like science fiction?

Oh, look. Someone is doing something about the awful parking situation in San Francisco. Let’s shit all over it. There’s plenty of class warfare here, and it has nothing to do with rich people.

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Please enlighten us about the refreshing mutually-fraternal relations between classes here then , because I don’t imagine you’re talking about Bayview internecine gang turf fights.

The problem with this app isn’t really about class warfare, though, it’s about actively encouraging people to fiddle with their phones while driving. And, it just occurred to me, how is it enforced? If I see someone about to leave a parking spot I can sit there and wait. Somebody who paid Monkeyparking $20 has absolutely no legal claim to that spot; if the current parker wants to squat there long enough to wear me down, fine, but he’s probably going have to wind up reimbursing that money.

Yes, let us indeed shit all over this dumb idea. But not because of class war, but because don’t idiotically drive somewhere you can’t park without attempting to bribe an untrusted third party. If you’ve got twenty bucks for this thing, you’ve got more than enough to park in a commercial garage.


Wait. So, it provides an “incentive to leave your parking spot”… when you’re in the car, turning the key?

Eh, $20? Is that a realistic price for an… uh spot leaving via this app? Because $21 will get you 6 hours in a downtown garage at mid-day, and that’s where it is most expensive.

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I’m looking forward to some enterprising individual developing an app like this, but then also selling real-time mapping data of people using their phones while driving to police. (You would probably need to integrate some good motion heuristics to differentiate a driver or passenger using it, but you could probably figure that our from periodic phone tilting as the driver looks up to see who they are about to run over).

now there’s a high-functioning society! civilization DOES work.

OT: I do not like the new layout. Scrolling down a list of articles works great. Scattering them randomly all over the page does not.


Class warfare?

It seems this is likely a one-way trickle-down effect form of warfare.

The sort of person who’s in such a rush to shell out $20 for a parking space is not quite so likely to wait around for somebody else to pay them $20 to take it off their busy, important hands.

What do we want – a regulated free market, or a centrally-planned economy?
The whole point of parking meters is rationing the commons. Here’s somebody privately trying to ration it even more effectively. Bully for them.

Perfect gig for the homeless.


Here in NYC there already is a class of professional parkers and doormen working for upper middle class people who can’t afford a parking spot of their own but can afford to pay someone to move their car and sit in it during street cleaning.

IMO an app like this could finally provide the impetus for dense cities like SF and NYC to do away with free street parking altogether. It’s ridiculous that in cities with horrible traffic problems, where monthly parking spaces in a lot can cost $500 or more per month, that we set aside massive amounts of public real estate for people to store their private vehicles indefinitely.

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A city that’s already very satisfying to ride a bike in just increased that level of satisfaction.

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I don’t see how Monkeyparking can really make a go of it as a business however - it’s a feature, not a business.

The trick is to blend the free parking with commercial parking lot offerings with the hostage space offerings and roll them into my driving navigation app.

When I set out to go someplace I am presented with route (faster vs. shorter / toll vs. free roads) options. Parking is just an additional step in the driving directions - I am presented with parking options (free but far vs. $ but closer). My full driving/parking/walking directions are then presented by my navigation app as I progress through them.

Won’t this get killed entirely if SFPark ( is successful? The plan is to price parking so 10% of it is, on average, free on a block. If they could actually do that no one would have to pay someone else for a spot through this app.