Per the Atlanta Business Chronicle, Atlanta City Councilwoman Joyce Sheperd has introduced an ordinance (Link) forbidding the construction of storage facilities from being built along or within a half-mile of the Atlanta Beltline.
For the uninitiated, the Atlanta Beltline is “the most comprehensive revitalization effort ever undertaken in the City of Atlanta and among the largest, most wide-ranging urban redevelopment programs currently underway in the United States.” At completion, it will connect 45 in-town neighborhoods via a 22-mile loop of multi-use trails, parks, and street cars.
Furthermore, it’s described as a living, breathing part of the community; not simply a means of getting somewhere, but a destination unto itself. For a sprawling city with disparate neighborhoods, Atlanta has a chance to redefine what it is to be a neighbor and a community along the lines of more connected cities like New York and Chicago.
According to the ordinance, the City-Council finds that storage facilities built in close proximity to the Beltline are “incompatible with the objectives, purposes, and intent of said district.”
We at MyPorter couldn’t agree more. Storage facilities are meant for industrial use. They’re a utilitarian commodity and an eyesore to citizens trying to shop, eat, and play. It would be a shame to take up valuable community-building space in Atlanta and Brookhaven for the purpose of storing baby clothes and boxes full of kitchen supplies. While laudable that some of our large traditional self-storage competitors (Public Storage, Extra Space) are making efforts to beautify their facilities, that space can never be used again for something that brings people together.
It’s time that cities know that full-service storage with pickup is an option. Why take up valuable real estate when firms who will drive in to the city and take it to a less populated area are at the ready? Admittedly, we’re biased, but as citizens who live in the Atlanta community – there is a better way for our industry to interact with the public. It’s time we embraced the future of storage – on demand with pickup and delivery at your door.