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The Sharing Depot: Toronto company wants to bring 'library of stuff' to city

Company plan to expand its sharing economy model to include sports equipment, camping gear and party supplies

Founders of the Toronto Tool Library are working on a new project that aims to prove everyone becomes a little richer when resources are shared.

Tentatively scheduled for a spring launch, the Sharing Depot is planned as a community hub where people can lease things like camping gear, sports equipment, kids toys or even supplies for your next house party.

“This will be a real library of things,” said co-founder Ryan Dyment.

The success of the tool library is a clear indication that people are hungry for more sharing, Dyment said. In just three years, the startup has opened four locations across the city, registered more than 2,000 members and loaned upwards of 25,000 tools ranging from screwdrivers to hacksaws.

Along with acting as a community service, the Sharing Depot will help emphasize the “circular economy,” Dyment said.

Someone who owns a tent, for example, may only use it once or twice a year. Through the sharing model, it can be used by dozens of people over time and, eventually, reduce the amount of trash tossed into landfills.

“People should stop buying things they don’t always need,” Dyment said, adding the long-term strategy is to partner with manufacturers and make sure products are designed to be durable, reused and shared.

“The idea of a circular economy is for more people to lease things rather than own them. That’s the future that I think is practical.”

The group needs $30,000 to open the Sharing Depot. More than $6,000 has already been raised through an Indiegogo campaign.

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