New App is Spot on for Eliminating Parking Stress

Posted January 2, 2015 by Cheryl Fenton in Business
Downtown Boston

For anyone who has ever owned a car in this city, you know the drill. You leave yourself plenty of time to get to your destination, but you end up in a panic. It’s down to the wire for being considered prompt when you make the dreaded call. “I’m trying to find a spot,” you say in a familiar frustrated tone to the friend on the other end. They sigh. They understand. They feel your pain.

So does Braden Golub, but he’s doing something about it. As of December 10, his Boston startup and smartphone app SPOT can help you out. After securing almost $1 million in funding, he and his team are going to help you answer the forever question of “now where do I park?”

Calling itself the “airbnb of parking,” SPOT takes lessons learned from the failed Haystack (a parking app that didn’t quite work…OK it was banned for trying to sell use of public spaces…in Boston) and makes it a win-win for everyone. Those who have the parking spaces, meet those who want the parking spaces. Working completely through their mobile devices, drivers can rent private spaces around town for everything from a few hours to weeks.

You can choose from several neighborhoods (Downtown Boston and Financial District, we’re talking to you), office buildings, universities, theater venues and even landmarks like Faneuil Hall or Post Office Square. Going out to eat? If your restaurant is listed (and hundreds are), you’re in luck. Just reserve a space and you’ll be able to park quicker than you can ask “What are you specials?”

Here’s how it works. You search parking (from the comfort of your own home, if you would like…not with cabs beeping behind you as you slowly troll the streets). Once you find your spot, book it and pay. You’ll get your reservation details and Parking Pass immediately and you can breathe a sigh of relief. If your plans change, the reservations can be canceled up to 24 hours before your chosen parking time and you’ll get a refund. When it’s time to make the parking magic happen, take your phone and pull up your ressie. Follow the directions and instructions for getting to your spot. Done and done.

According to the SPOT website, Boston (and all of it’s parking complications) is the city that inspired Golub to build the app in the first place, so Boston was naturally a great place to launch it.

With advisors like Jeffrey Beir of seed2A and Woody Benson of Prism Ventureworks sitting by his side, Golub is poised for ultimate success. He’s been building up his parking kingdoms in other 11 urban hubs including Chicago, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Miami, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Spot is now available for free download on iOS and Android devices.

Imagine being able to search, find and reserve parking even before you get into your car. You’ll even know how much you will pay. This means that you don’t have to freak out. At least over parking. Traffic? For that, you’re on your own for now.