An excellent method of reusing — there are more than 300 million shipping containers sitting empty at ports around the world — shipping containers are used to build full and part-time single-family homes and much more. In their most basic form, recycled shipping containers offer a quick and inexpensive solution to emergency housing needs and when stacked sky-high, they make for intriguing dormitory complexes.
Below are nine particularly eye-catching recycled shipping container. Enjoy!
The Container Guest House is the first of several projects by Poteet Architects we will be featuring. As a national award-winning firm, Poteet Architects is best known for their sensitive adaptive reuse of existing buildings and a fresh, rigorous approach to modern interior design. This project originated from Poteet Architects’s client’s wish to experiment with shipping containers. She lives in a small warehouse on a former industrial site just south of downtown. The finished project serves as a guesthouse and is fitted with a shower/WC and a custom stainless sink. The large steel and glass lift/slide and end window wall open the interior to the surrounding landscape. The remainder of the interior is used as a garden shed.
Atelier Workshop’s Port-a-Bach shipping container home might just make standard RVs obsolete. A veritable home on-the-go, you can roll into place, fold down one side, make your bed and be right at home. As long as you have some property, of course.
Taking the portability of shipping container housing to an altogether new level of portability, this 20-foot container has been outfitted with an entire studio apartment, including a kitchen and a full bath with a composting toilet. It also has a “non-invasive foundation”, which allows for plenty of flexibility in terms of ground placement.
Old Lady House
The main living space of the light-flooded Adam Kalkin Container House in Califon, NJ is three shipping containers wide by two shipping containers tall with two sides made almost entirely of glass.
Mobile Dwelling Unit
Many shipping container homes are stacked and linked together to create more living space. That’s not the case with the Mobile Dwelling Unit, a proudly single-decker shipping container home that avoids the claustrophobic “long but narrow” syndrome by incorporating pop-out elements that extended from the 40-foot long, 8-foot wide core of the home, accordion-style. If and when the home is in transit, the elements — kitchen, bathroom, reading nook, bed, desk, sofa and storage space — fold back into their slots.
Ross Stevens House
It is a wall of containers, built against a hill in Wellington, New Zealand, designed and built by Ross Stevens. It uses the spaces between the containers and the hill to expand its living space beyond that limiting interior dimensions of a standard ISO box.
The Cordell House is built upon a framework of four individual shipping containers – three 40′ units and one 20′ unit. The large units house the bedrooms and living rooms of the home, while the 20′ unit is dedicated as a kitchen. These pieces were fused on a 5,000 square foot lot, taking up 1,858 square feet for the living space itself. This complex also features a guest house separated by an 800 square foot breezeway patio (shown below). Altogether, the Cordell House is sustainable in material, progressive in design and vibrant as a habitat.
Built cheaply ($118,000), quickly (in fewer than 90 days) and primarily with recycled objects (two 40-foot shipping containers and two 20-foot shipping containers and wooden pallets), the two-story Manifesto House designed by architects James & Mau in Curacavi, Chile, proves that quick, inexpensive and green contemporary casas can indeed be good-looking. In addition to being constructed from 85 percent recycled, reused and nonpolluting materials, the bioclimatic and modular design of Manifesto House incorporates alternative energy systems. We think it looks like the perfect spot to kick back, relax and have a couple of cervezas all the while keeping our eco-footprints at a bare minimum.
This project questions the need for excessive space and challenges occupants to be efficient. Two shipping containers saddlebag a taller common space that connects local rock outcroppings to the expansive mountain ridge views. The containers house sleeping and work functions while the center space provides entry, dining, living and a loft above. The loft deck invites easy camping as the platform bed rolls between interior and exterior. The Studio H:T project is planned to be off-the-grid using solar orientation, passive cooling, green roofs, pellet stove heating and photovoltaics to create electricity.
Containers of Hope
Gabriela Calvo and Marco Peralta dreamed of living in their fantastic property 20 minutes outside of the city of San Jose, Costa Rica; where they could be with their horses and enjoy the natural landscape. They made the very bold choice of exploring with me the possibility of creating a very inexpensive house made out of disregarded shipping containers that allowed them to be dept free and live the life they always dreamed of. It was important for me to provide them with the sunrise, the sunset, the spectacular views, and overall try and create a feeling of comfort and home.