A Tool Library is Coming to Capitol Hill!

Curious about what a tool library is? Thanks to the folks at Sustainable Capitol Hill, you will now have the chance to find out first-hand!

farmers market2

Sustainable Capitol Hill tables about the Tool Library at the Broadway Farmers Market

After a long search and with the generosity of the First Covenant Church, Sustainable Capitol Hill has finally secured a location! The tool library is expected to be up and running at 420 E. Pike St. (between Pike and Pine with the entrance from Crawford Pl.) this coming fall. 

What is a tool library?

The idea of a tool library is simple: build up a collection of tools in an established location, make them available to check out and return as needed, and in this case, foster skill-sharing and community-building in the process.

As the Capitol Hill Tool Library puts it:

Imagine borrowing a food dehydrator, a ladder, a fishing rod, much like you would borrow a book from SPL. Imagine learning how to fix your broken toaster, building a worm bin, preserving your summer bounty. Enjoy a local community of knowledgeable fixers, tool lending, and workshops at the new Capitol Hill Tool Library.

A tool lending library is by no means a new concept, but with the rise of interest and projects associated with the “sharing economy,” tool libraries have made a comeback. For a wide range of economic, social or environmental reasons, more and more people are turning away from “traditional” consumption and looking for more creative ways to meet their needs. See all Tool Libraries in Seattle.

The West Seattle Tool Library

The West Seattle Tool Library

Instead of everyone buying their own tools–ladders, food dehydrators, pressure washers, etc.–people will soon be able to check out these tools just for the amount of time that they are needed, thereby saving money and storage space in the process.

By providing access rather than ownership, a tool library can have a multiplier effect on the value of the items while reducing consumption, waste, and inefficient use of space. At the same time, having a space where people can meet for workshops, skill-shares or to collaborate provides an opportunity to not only build new skills, but to directly strengthen connections between people, projects and community.


Talking about what a Tool Library could look like in Capitol Hill

Ultimately a tool library builds off of and magnifies one of our greatest resources: each other. By connecting people and shared resources (tools, knowledge, labor), we are creating wealth for our community in both a material and social sense. A truly successful tool library goes from Do-It-Yourself (DIY) to Do-It-Together (DIT) mentality and everyone wins in the process.

And there’s still a lot more work to be done! We need YOU to help make the Capitol Hill Tool Library a reality.

Check out Sustainable Capitol Hill on facebook or twitter for all the updates!