Apps for Metro Chicago Announces WinnersBY: Michelle Doellman | August 31, 2011
Previous Tech.li feature SpotHero was deemed the winer with a $5,000 prize. SpotHero is an app used to bridge the gap between the have’s and have-not’s of the ever-elusive Chicago parking spot. The disgruntled Chicago metro-area driver can reserve a spot from the paying owner and not have to worry about those darn parking meters. The owner of the spot makes some money to pay for the darn thing when they’re not parked in/using it. Win-win!
FasPark came in second place, connecting Chicago drivers to available parking spots in real-time. With a single press of “Park Me,” the app guides drivers en route to a spot. The FasPark option takes drivers to the nearest available spot in a pinch.
Need to be at the nearest grocery store, CVS or Chicago Public Health Department within thirty minutes? Use third prize-winning InThirty and you’ll find a variety of uses by the system plotting resources within thirty minutes of CTA transport, bike routes or walking.
As the cost of the CTA goes up and the economy continues to sputter, more Chicagoans are taking to their bikes. Bikers can anonymously record their bike routes with fourth place TrailBlaze Chicago and other bikers can vote on the best routes.
Go Chicago! No really, in fifth place, Go Chicago offers an app that lets users list places and things they like to do and see in Chicago and map them out. Share with friends, meet up and have some fun!
Other prize winners:
Potholes…the first sign of winter in Chicago. Ha, and you thought it was ice on the lake! SpotHole app gives residents in Chicago neighborhoods a way to jump on getting their streets fixed up by recording any hazardous road situations.
Trek around Chicago with TreKing Chicago, the only Android app that syncs all four major transportation systems.
Transitsocial links the bus and train trackers offered through the CTA with Yelp-like socialization for users to find the hottest new restaurant and the fewest transfers to get there.
For those Chicagoans who don’t own a smart phone, text Chicago TXT at 312-970-9953 and they’ll text you train and water taxi departures.
Buster allows you to save your everyday commute bus stops as favorites instead of sorting through the entire bus list on the CTA bus tracker.
Ever wanted to meet friends out but didn’t know how long the walk from the El station would be or if you would get dropped off by the bus right across the street? See How Mobile providers distance location to see how transportation friendly any given Chicago location is. You can even search along the nearest highway for a weekend getaway or the closet Zipcar location for an afternoon of errands in the city.
Chicago Rider is another app for the transit junkie in Chicago. Cool feature: you can set alarms for your stops so you don’t miss it after that extra drink at happy hour. Sidenote: My iTunes hadn’t been opening for over a month. Clicked on the Alki Labs website and poof! It popped up! Thanks Chicago Rider!
And congrats to all of the winning apps!