Thousands of self storage facilities around the nation are contributing billions of dollars to the economy. The Self Storage Association said more than $22 billion was generated in the U.S. alone through self storage in 2011. This amount is growing every year as people seek cost effective ways to store vehicles, office equipment and items they don’t need around the house everyday. Since self storage facilities are continuing to evolve and grow worldwide, it is worth asking where the concept began in the first place.
History of self storage facilities
Evidence suggests the concept of self storage dated 2,000 years ago in China. The British then refined the concept when they crated items, set them inside stables and set watchmen over them.
One of the first examples of self storage in the U.S. was a business created by brothers Martin and John Bekins in 1891. The business was located in Omaha, Nebraska and consisted of three horse-drawn vans and about 12 employees. In 1906, the business was expanded to Los Angeles and the brothers started using moving vans instead of horse-drawn carriages. The business focused on local moving and storage, long distance moving and international moving for military personnel and civilians after World War II. In their own way, the Bekin brothers pioneered the concept of containerized storage.
Storage facilities began to take off in the United States during the sixties. A facility built in 1964 in Odessa, Texas was the first to use garage-style doors. The building named U-Store-It U-Lock-It U-Carry-the-Key, was created for the oil industry to give companies access to tools and supplies as soon as they needed them. The country began to take notice and these facilities started popping up everywhere.
Future of self storage facilities
Statistics related to the use of self storage facilities are staggering. There are over 50,000 facilities worldwide and that number is continuing to grow. Rentable space in the United States is more than 2.3 billion square feet, or three times the size of the island of Manhattan.
These facilities are also gaining serious attention in the entertainment world. Shows like Storage Wars and Auction Hunters garner thousand of views and continue to put the spotlight on these rental units. You can safely say we have not seen the last of storage related entertainment. The industry will continue to grow and develop in the coming years due to this entertainment and the general need for more space.
Are you looking for a self storage unit that will fit your needs? Sparky’s Storage Solutions in Amarillo, Texas is a cutting edge facility complete with an access controlled gate and closed circuit recorded surveillance system. Visit us online to learn more about self-storage in Amarillo or call us today at (806) 353-9500 to find out more information about our units. You can also Contact Us by email or visit us in person at 7550 Golden Pond Place.