By: Kate Maeder

Looking for parking in the city? There’s an iPhone app for that!

The world is watching today as the San Francisco Municipal SFpark-iphoneappTransportation Agency announces an iPhone app to help you find parking in the city.

It’s called SFPark – and it supposedly “helps you park smarter in San Francisco” so you’re circling less and parking more. The app gives you real-time availability and prices for parking on the streets and garages in SOMA, Marina District, Embarcadero, Financial District, Fisherman’s Wharf, Mission District and Hayes Valley.

How does the SFPark App Work?

The 2-year, $20 million pilot program uses wireless sensors in the pavement and new parking meters to deliver real-time data. This data feed is even free to third party developers. The SFPark iPhone app claims to be roughly 90% accurate and takes 60 seconds for the data to travel from the street sensor to the palm of your hand. Learn more about how the SFPark app works here.

If It Works – A Great Start for Government 2.0

The app SFpark-iphoneapp-errorcould be a really great start for the open data and government 2.0 movement – but it’s just a start and it has to prove that it works first. The SF MUNI is pretty good at having press conferences. What they have not been particularly good at is following through after the cameras are turned off. The parking app clearly still has some technical flaws. My app switches to “very light weight view” for no apparent reason. This is the alert I keep getting on my app as it fails to deliver the real-time data. I can still check out the parking garage information – helpful, I guess.

I would hope that city officials would make the big announcement when the app actually worked… but hopefully this $20 million project gets working and gets the city to stop circling and to start parking.

Check out the website here – – and you can download it right here from the iTunes store.