What we are about
Our team is passionate about making the world a better place, and we strive to make Dockshare more than just a successful business. Here are some of the ways we believe Dockshare can contribute to the bigger picture.
Boosting Tourism & Economic Development
Before the turn-of-the-century, boating was the most common and most efficient means of transportation, both for passengers and cargo. Most towns and cities were built and established due to their close proximity and easy access to the water. While some of these towns flourished into vibrant, bustling cities (like Baltimore, where the Dockshare team is based!), many of them are now well beyond their hey-day and have lost their once bustling economy due to the shift to land-based transportation. We believe that Dockshare has the ability to put these places “back on the map”, creating places for transient boats to dock, and day trippers to “park” for a few hours. There are many incredibly beautiful and quaint waterfront towns with huge tourism potential, but the lack of public dock space inhibits their ability to be seen as a tourism destination by the boating community.
It is our dream that one day, if waterfront owners list their property on Dockshare, that they could receive some kind of tax credit from their local municipality, because they are contributing to their local economy by expanding transient docking opportunities.
Expanding Access to Water
Over 75% of the world’s coastlines are privately owned, restricting access for anyone else to see the water, launch a boat, dock a boat, access paddlesports, fish from the shore, or simply enjoy the scenery. And in some cases, in the very environmentally significant bodies of water such as the Chesapeake Bay, over 98% of the shorelines are privately owned. Finding places to access the waterfront can oftentimes be extremely challenging, particularly for underserved communities, leading to a larger equity problem.
When people can’t access the water, they don’t access the water, and they don’t develop a connection with the water. When there’s no connection and appreciation for our waterways, there’s no motivation to protect them.
While Dockshare doesn’t exactly expand public access to waterways, we do strive to expand access. Creating true public access usually involves a lengthy process of land acquisition by the state or county level government. It then needs funds and staff to maintain the area. Dockshare is the more achievable stepping stone between private and public, allowing privately-owned pieces of waterfront property to be used for the greater good.
An Ally to the Boating Industry & the Environment
Since Dockshare first launched, we have found that potential boat buyers are searching for dock space even before they purchase a boat. Those that are shopping for a boat may not end up purchasing because they have nowhere to dock it. It is also a problem when ambitious boaters purchase a boat before having access to dock space. Poor planning incentivizes boaters to abandon their boats in the waterways, which then deteriorate and leak harsh chemicals into the environment. As Dockshare grows with more listings, we hope that both of these problems will be alleviated.
Breaking Down Larger Obstacles
In some regions, renting out private docks is prohibited. Waterfront owners may want to list their properties on Dockshare, but local ordinances prohibit them from doing so legally. By tackling the aforementioned goals, we hope to also publicize the value of sharing access to private dock space and persuade local governments to remove barriers to private dock rental.