How can you build efficient Urban communities, homes, and businesses?

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Small business storage units - Mini Warehouses

I own a small business and am friends with other folks in similar trades - electricians, window and door installers, landscapers. One type of storage space that we all seem to need but not have available is a mini warehouse with a shared reception/shipment receiver.

Lets take the window installer - he gets shipments of windows that someoneĀ  needs to sign for. The come off a semi, so the building needs to have a dock height door. But to rent a warehouse with a dock height door, and put someone in there full time, would cost upwards of $5,00 a month. So instead he rents a large 15' x 45' mini storage unit at a Public Storage, for about $300, and then heads over whenever there is a shipment. This costs him a great deal of time away from the job, because the trucks that come in want a 4 hour or full day window, and sometimes don't show up during that time. My friend that handles crated military household goods shipments has the same issues with delivery and pick up with dock height trucks and similar warehousing requirements, but they don't have the size to get a dedicated warehouse and full-time warehouse workers.

A mini warehouse with low cost unmanned storage options as well as step up to manned mini warehouses with a shared receptionist or warehouse man and forklift (a forklift costs about $5000, heavily negating the cost saving of buying direct and getting materials shipped in) could be a low cost incubator for the types of small businesses that lend themselves to apprenticeships. It would also most likely be profitable as an investment, as self storage is the most profitable investment class.