Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Monkey Parking: App That Lets Drivers Bid on Parking Spots Shuts Down -- For Now

Posted By on Thu, Jul 10, 2014 at 1:28 PM

click to enlarge Wanted: 6 parking spaces in San Francisco - FLICKR/OJBYRNE
  • flickr/ojbyrne
  • Wanted: 6 parking spaces in San Francisco

That app that got San Francisco drivers even more pissed off about parking has gone offline for now.

Monkey Parking, the app that lets drivers sell their public parking space to the highest bidder, was warned by the City Attorney in June to disable its "illegal" app or face some not-so-fun consequences.

Initially, the Italian-based app developer refused and the bidding war business carried on in San Francisco until today when the creators posted the following message on its blog:

Dear MonkeyParkers,

The bidding service on MonkeyParking has been temporary disabled in the San Francisco area. In light of the cease and desist letter that we received from the City of San Francisco, we are currently reviewing our service to clarify our value proposition and avoid any future misunderstandings.

Street parking is currently not a first-come-first-served process, but still a random-served one: you can go in circles for hours while a lucky driver can find a spot in a minute, right in front of you. It is an old and painful problem and we believe that drivers deserve a better solution.

Our mission is to get rid of circling the block turning a random parking process into a predictable one, saving people time while also reducing traffic congestion and generated pollution. We want to achieve our mission within the intent and letter of the law and in full cooperation with the local authorities.

We are working to avoid any possible improper use of our service and provide a positive tool for the City of San Francisco and its inhabitants. Stay tuned on, news coming soon!

The MonkeyParking Team

Monkey Parking started some unnecessary tension back in May when it decided to use San Francisco as its guinea pig in testing its new parking app. How it works is simple (and controversial): a driver ready to leave his parking spot on the street would post the soon-to-be available spot online; drivers in search of parking could then bid on the available spot -- and the person who is willing to pay the most gets it.

It's pretty clever and also pretty illegal, according to City Attorney Dennis Herrera. From his standpoint, residents can't profit from publicly owned space, and that includes a parking spot. "It creates a predatory private market for public parking spaces that San Franciscans will not tolerate," Herrera said last month.

So there's the latest on that issue. We'll be sure to keep you posted, ecause this is definitely a new kind of parking war in San Francisco.

  • Pin It

About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


Comments are closed.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"