I feel like both deserve a place. On one hand it does give mass storage to otherwise crowded spaces filled with countless stacks of various (highly abundant) materials. For builders in particular this would be a godsend since we have this bad habit of hoarding every rock we come across on the off chance it’ll work in a future build.
Shelves make an excellent showcase/babies-first-storage-unit. So I think that it would definately pay to give more advanced players or even moderately advanced players the option of building chests while still maintaining shelves as the early alternative. I personally would likely use more shelves than chests, however more items would be stored via chests.
For those worrying about how to go about sorting and trying to remember what is in where. KKeep in mind that shelves would still exist. I recommend using them as a marker for what is stored where and when the shelf is out you can pull more out of the chest to replace it. Or use a sign, for me personally its not all that much effort but for some its too much.
Personally I like my structure to look good aesthetically but still maintain function. A hall of randomly assorted junk on the walls to me is an eyesore. I don’t like eyesores but am willing to put up with them in the hopes of one day being able to fix said eyesore. That being said I don’t expect to be right, just to voice my opinion on a long debated subject.