If he could change one thing about the traditional self storage industry, Neighbor co-founder and CEO Joseph Woodbury has this to say: No new builds.
Part of what makes the traditional self storage industry unsustainable is its growth — the manufacture of massive buildings made of concrete and steel materials generates hundreds of thousands of pounds of carbon emissions each year. Woodbury sees a different future for storage: One where existing spaces are recycled to meet consumers’ storage needs, instead of meeting demand by constantly building more and more storage facilities.
In this series, we’ve talked about the negative environmental impact of the traditional storage industry, and how using Neighbor, a peer-to-peer storage marketplace, helps offset the industry’s carbon emissions. But Neighbor has bigger goals: To make the future of storage not just carbon-neutral, but carbon-negative. The only way to do it, according to Woodbury and Neighbor’s other leaders and investors, is to disrupt the self storage industry through sharing existing spaces — and stopping new storage facility builds in the process.