Finding parking is always a chore, but new tools and companies are making it easier than ever to find a place to leave your vehicle. One startup focused on this problem, Streetline, is getting a big boost for its real-time parking data through a partnership with Cisco that could help get its parking sensors deployed in more cities around the country.
Streetline’s system for parking info works by combining sensors that are installed next to parking spaces with a mobile app to provide true, real-time availability of parking throughout a city. The sensors are installed in the sidewalk next to parking spaces throughout a city and can determine whether a car is present based on magnetometers and light sensitivity. They operate on a mobile mesh network that then relays signals back to the cloud, and then make that information available through the Streetline Parker app.
That’s where Cisco comes in: The censors are tied into local municipal Wi-Fi networks provided through Cisco network equipment. The equipment provider is working with cities and universities on deploying networks that solve a range of problems. Deploying citywide Wi-Fi is one piece, but those networks are also increasingly being used for applications like Streetline’s parking use case.
Once the sensors have been installed and connected to the network, users will be able to find parking spots in real-time, thanks to Streetline’s Parker app. The app helps users find street parking and garage parking nearby, when applicable.
The first two cities to benefit from the partnership are San Mateo and San Carlos, Calif., but there are likely more cities to come. Streetline has deployments in 25 to 30 different municipalities and universities around the country, charging a monthly fee for use of its technology. But since Cisco has existing relationships with a number of different cities, we could see the technology integration being introduced in other places where its equipment has been deployed.
Last year Streetline raised $15 million from Fontinalis Partners, RockPort Capital Partners, and Sutter Hill Ventures.