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Have Trouble Parking Downtown? A Canton Resident Has An App For That!

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Meghan McCorkell joined the Eyewitness News team in July 2011 as a...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)— Parking headaches could soon be alleviated in some of the city’s busiest neighborhoods. A new Baltimore-based app launched to help drivers find parking spots.

Meghan McCorkell has more on how it works.

That new app is called Haystack because sometimes finding parking here in the city is like finding a needle in a haystack.

Circling the block. Parking is at a premium in downtown Baltimore neighborhoods.

“Sometimes you would spend 15- 20 minutes to find a parking spot,” one resident said.

It’s a huge source of headaches in Canton and Fells Point.

“If you’re home by 5:30 it’s not too bad. But anything after that, you’re definitely struggling with parking,” said Steve Misewich, of Canton.

Now a new app could help you find a spot and earn some cash too.

Haystack is founded by Canton homeowner Eric Meyer.

“You can help out a neighbor and save them 30 minutes circling by going directly to the spot,” Meyer said.

Here’s how it works. If you’re leaving a parking spot, you can offer it up on Haystack for money. If another Haystack member wants the spot, they can connect with you on the app and pay the fee. The app then alerts you when that driver has arrived to take the spot.

The app even keeps track of the size of your car to match you with spots where your car can fit.

Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger says the new app could help alleviate traffic troubles.

“It’s been said that research has shown that at least 30 percent of all traffic is because people are driving around trying to find a parking spot. So this technology is going to help people do that,” Ruppersberger said.

The technology could take the pain out of parking.

Drivers looking for spots will have fees automatically deducted from their Haystack account or card on file.

The Haystack app is available for download on Android and iPhones right now. The parking community goes live next week.

And with the launch of the app, Meyer says they are partnering with Living Classrooms, donating a portion of the proceeds when people use the app for the first week.

Parking Panda was also started here in Baltimore and helps people park in garages and public spaces.

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