ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The South East Area Coalition has opened a new tool library in Rochester called the Tool Shed. The space is on the lower level of 1255 University Avenue in Rochester. There, people can borrow tools like they would books at the library, all for $25 a year.
The shed has currently 500 tools available, from lawn equipment, to hand tools, to saws, and more. All of it is available to see on their website. The renter finds an item on the site, goes to the Tool Shed, and rents it out.
The system and service were inspired to help people save some money, since most people doing home repairs or other projects only need an expensive tool once. “The average tool will be used about 12 minutes in a person’s life,” said Mike Evans, the executive director of SEAC, a grassroots non-profit in Rochester. “So for a drill that $80, you’re roughly spending $6.50 to $7 bucks per minute to use this tool that you’re going to use. It saves people money that they can invest into other things, their own children, health, education, food, whatever.”
And it’s not an exactly an original concept—after all, tool libraries do exist in many major cities. Specifically, the Tool Shed was inspired by the Buffalo Tool Library and working with Fairport Tool Thrift Shop. In addition to saving people money, the tool shed also helps the environment.
“We will be starting to weigh our tools and as we do a yearly report, we’re going to see how much tool waste we keep out of landfills,” Evans said. He adds that SEAC and the Tool Shed are always looking for volunteer and tool donations. Evans also says the next step for them is to start hosting DYI sessions.