Don’t get me wrong. One of the wonderful things about our suburb is the access it gives to boat based recreational activities. Kayaking, rowing, dinghy sailing, yacht racing, fishing, power boating, motor cruising all have their passionate adherents in Mosman and it is hard to imagine another place in the world with better water access. The popularity of boating inevitably means that storage for boats is presenting an increasing challenge. It seems that there are two categories of boat owners – those that use their craft on a very regular basis and those, for whatever reason only manage to get out occasionally. For this latter group it would probably make more financial sense to hire a boat when needed. It would certainly ease the boat storage problem.
All over Mosman there are boats on trailers parked on the street. Residents in affected streets understandably get annoyed, particularly when the boat is rarely used. Sometimes the boat and trailer are taking up a high demand spot such as this, possibly abandoned, boat parked in Avenue Road, taking up a space that could otherwise be used by someone parking and riding at the ferry wharf. Local and State governments need to come up with a means to discourage long term boat parking without discriminating against every week boaties. I will be following the debate carefully. My advice to anyone contemplating buying a boat that requires on-street storage would be to thoroughly investigate the economics of hiring first and only buying once you have established you really will use your boat enough to make purchase the cheaper option. The residents in your street will thank you for it!
Of course it is not just for boats that hiring is a good option. Most of us probably have a garage full of rarely used tools and equipment that will either become obsolete or age-out before it wears out through use. Perhaps Council should foster the development of street cooperatives where groups of neighbours share equipment. It would mean less cluttered houses, promote a sense of community and be good for the environment. And the inconvenience could be minimised via a web based booking service.