Beyond Books: Why Some Libraries Now Lend Tools, Toys and More
Beyond boosting digital literacy and fostering intellectual curiosity, lending these items also ties into the broader trend of collaborative consumption or the sharing economy. “Seldom-used tools like the stud finders or soil testers are great because you use them once or twice a year, so there’s no point in purchasing them yourself,” Lent says. He adds that a colleague in Brookline, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston where many residents live in small spaces, finds kitchen equipment to be in high demand. “[In Brookline], people have mostly apartments, and so they don’t want to have all this kitchen gear [when they’re not using it],” Lent explains.