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July 2, 2007

4 Min Read
Media Watchdog

As the self-storage industry permeates our communities, it receives increasing attention from mainstream media outletsand not always favorably. As industry professionals, we should be aware of how self-storage is presented to the public. Media Watchdog is devoted to policing and summarizing general news coverage.

Board Rejects Storage Application 
Courier Leader, 3.19.07 

Rich Kurth of Lawrence, Mich., was surprised when the Paw Paw Township zoning board declined a text amendment to a zoning classification that would allow him, with site plan approval, to construct an 84-unit self-storage complex. The proposed site is zoned commercial convenience. Currently, self-storage is not listed as a permitted use in the commercial convenience zoning district.

Growing Population Fuels Self-Storage Boom 
The Press-Enterprise, 2.24.07 

As the population of North America grows, people require more residential space. And self-storage, which lets them lock up their possessions outside of their living quarters, has boomed. The number of facilities nationwide went from 23,000 in 1994 to 47,000 last year, according to Self-Storage Brokers of America. Developers are getting on the bandwagon. For example, John Minar of Irvine, Calif., owns or runs about 30 facilities, 26 in Southern California. He recently bought five facilities in Duarte, Montclair, Riverside and Victorville, Calif.

Customer Frightened by Potato-Gun Blast 
United Press International, 4.8.07 

A frightened customer of A-1 Self Storage in San Diego phoned the police after thinking a loud boom was a gun shot. It turned out the noise was caused by harmless foam-rubber shot from a potato gun. A helicopter was dispatched to the area, and the pilot spotted a man matching the description of the alleged gunman. Police then found the massive black weapon made from a 6-foot-by-4-inch piece of PVC pipe.

County Considers Curbing Portable Storage 
The Washington Times, 2.22.07 

Fairfax County, Wash., is considering limiting the use of portable storage following complaints by county residents who say the 8-by-12-foot containers are unsightly and make parking difficult. Moving and storage companies are also complaining about portable storage, which receives an unfair advantage because of the lack of regulation by Fairfax County.

Storage Breathes New Life Into Old Building 
Portsmouth Herald, 3.15.07 

A former 115,000-square-foot manufacturing space in Newfields, N.H., received new life when it was converted into a self-storage facility. The building was cleaned up and renovated into Newfields Storage. Customers can drive into the building to unload their belongings. Future units will be directly accessible by car. The facility also offers commercial warehouse space.

Spring Cleaning or Storing?
Christian Science Monitor, 4.16.07 

April 2007 marks the start of a peak season for the self-storage industry. Many Americans whose attics, basements and garages are crammed with stuff realize a storage unit provides an ideal answer. In the past 30 years, the square footage of new American homes has increased by nearly 40 percent, while the average family size has shrunk by 8 percent, according to the U.S. Census. And Americans are storing their goods for longer periods. Storage was mostly short term and related to moving when the industry began 35 years ago. Now a six-month term turns into long-term storage, sometimes even for years.

Developer Defends Self-Storage Plan 
Lancaster New Era, 4.12.07 

The plan for Moovin Storage in Lancaster, Pa., has drawn criticism from neighbors who voiced their concerns at a meeting of the Warwick Township zoning board. In defense of his plan, the developer states the center will be designed to look like an office building. While plan requirements include 30 parking spaces, only two or three cars are expected to be parked at the facility at one time. The developer also maintains local traffic flows will not increase.

Homeowners Powerless in Storage-Development Decision 
Little Elm Journal, 3.21.07 

More than 60 residents of a Paloma Creek, Texas, subdivision failed in their opposition to the rezoning of 4 acres that would permit construction of AllStorage at Paloma Creek. Residents said the 57-foot-tall brick structure resembles a prison in appearance. Council members told citizens the project fell within the towns development plans for that area. Representative for the facility said the design looks like an office complex, and the site will feature large trees to screen it from residents view.

Storage Expansion Given Go Ahead 
West Fargo Pioneer, 4.18.07 

West Fargo Self Storage in Fargo., N.D., received a conditional-use permit from the West Fargo City Commissioners for the expansion of storage space. The property was developed several years ago with multiple mini-storage buildings. The owner wants to build a 30-foot-by- 30-foot addition onto an existing building on the west side of the property, which would add five storage units.

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