A floating home which appears mainly from timber construction but offers an interesting design for a home on waterways. No doubt could be adapted if not already to utilize sustainable materials. The home was actually prefabricated and travelled from the contractors workshop from another location on the lake. Although the timber frame also makes this a lighter home for construction, I am sure that shipping containers could be used in the same way as the shape of the home could easily be adapted to shipping container usage for recycling containers at the same time if looking to do something similar. Here in the Philippines for example timber isn’t always practical due to cost as well as termites. Which is the main reason most construction here is done in concrete.
Most people think of prefab construction as being off-site pieces assembled on site – floating a whole house was quite a task but saved time, energy and money in the long run. It is a rare building that can be more cheaply built to float than to sit on land.
This blog came about due to looking to build our home here in the Philippines as well as looking into the viability of shipping container homes for low cost housing. Currently the low cost housing is looking more likely to go with modular kits due to the logistic issues of shipping containers and the purchase price of used containers in the Philippines. This sort of slows our projects currently down to a snails pace as we start to look for land capable of dropping container units onto as generally for the budget we have the land is very uneven and access difficult by road.
But this also gives a platform for people to send in their own projects and designs to share them with everybody else if your interested. Building the blog site as more of a community rather than a single writer is important to showing other alternatives and ideas of shipping container home developments and we want you to be part of it.
This is a rather interestingly designed building that makes a colourful modern statement. Built from 32 recycled shipping containers it offers 12 office/studio units for business rentals. Constructed on a waste piece of land in road island previously the Harris Lumber yard. you can see how swiftly the construction came about in the video below. Another reason why shipping containers make an ideal modular framework.
These car showrooms are a practical example of how a shipping container module can be used. I have also worked with a company in the UK previously that use the outer steel frames you see here that form an open sided shell that slot walls drop into. This is probably based on the same technology but still using the shipping container size and weights for transportation. A small 7.5 ton truck with attached crane can move these and deliver one at a time. Making it not only cost affective for construction but also transportation.
Petrol Station (Gas station) Koboko district, west nile region uganda
May seem a little odd for some as the fuel consumption of cars are pretty high. But I have seen similar units for sale here in the Philippines aswell because they are ideal for more remote areas that mainly use motorbikes or have low fuel consumption due to lack of vehicles in the area that wouldn’t justify a large scale petrol station at the same time this type is probably less likely to pollute the ground as working in the industry years ago underground tanks had a habit of rusting and leaking over the years which is why they are removed due to contamination issues in the ground.
The design of the house is simple but elegant using the hillside at the back of the property as a footing allowing also to be used possibly as a wind break from the elements. The openness of the surrounding area allows for the property to have some beautiful views to the pool side of the property. This was part of the design to give 180 degrees of viewing of the surrounding areas giving it a more natural feel to the property.
The decked pool area also gives another area to relax and building the pool long and narrow gives the ability of swimming lengths without too much waste of space. As well as in keeping with the container design of the home.
There are some interesting design aspects of Steele Design’s Escape P.O.D. namely the use of natural ventilation although have a concern about roof removal of a container and also if tropical like here the overhangs would be better further out for not only catching more cool air to cool the building but also to prevent a soaking if there is heavy rainfall and a side wind. Concept is good though very minimalistic but no doubt could be easily functional.
At first this shipping container doesn’t look like much but its actually maximised its space pretty well to provide 2 good sized bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, washer and dryer area,dining area and kitchen. There seems to be an absence of sitting room but could be utilized in the corridor between the two bedrooms as it appears the owners spend their spare time in the bedrooms (judging by the TV in there). The shipping container home has a good size of kitchen which is a must for many. My wife loves cooking and its the one area she would love to be big wherever or whatever our home is. Good use of space throughout this shipping container house.
When building a shipping container home its important to look at the initial location and how you can blend and use the environment to your advantage. In this case you will see several green ideas that work very well in using nature to assist rather than hinder. Everything from rainwater harvesting and grey water treatment to using bladed windows on both sides of the container to allow natural airflow and light into the building. Initially the costs may be a bit higher than conventional home building but long term your looking at a home that needs no artificial light during daylight hours and its natural cooling means that air conditioning isn’t needed either. A video well worth watching for ideas on how to build a green shipping container home.
A debate sprung up regarding the usage of containers as jail cells as New Zealand is looking to use its inmates to build them. Primarily because part of breaking the cycle of crime is gaining skills and self worth. Teaching the prisoners how to construct will also give them a level of satisfaction. You can read more about it here.
Now I want to continue with the jail concept for another reason though as I spent some time in Brixton Prison in the UK. Nope not as an inmate! but there doing an evaluation on the structure and infrastructure of the buildings. There has been major problems there due to a high suicide rate and living conditions being very poor. The main reasons for the problems within the prison walls is firstly some of the buildings are 200 years old and on top of that the capacity of prisoners is doubled compared to its original capacity. This normally means a single toilet and cell shared between 2 – 3 prisoners which if you imagine a bunk bed with a toilet pan next to it besides that you have less than 1 1/2mtrs of space left to move around.
Shipping containers could offer a cheap solution in the UK as well as many other countries as well as being cost affective in the long run as there isn’t a lot to repair or replace in a steel building.
Americanwavemachines has made the surfstream equipment using ISBU shipping containers an obvious choice due to shipping containers being hard wearing and secure. They didn’t stop there though they have also utilized shipping containers as the water areas so your quite literally surfing in a shipping container!
Computer Aid International has installed this solar-powered Internet cafe in Zambia and Kenya. The shipping container internet cafe is housed inside a 20ft shipping container and these units will be distributed to schools right across Zambia and Kenya.
First thing I want to say is that often people question the viability of solar panels for energy at the same time people often forget when thinking about it for themselves they are on grid and in built up areas. What about remote areas that many lack any power for miles or if they do can offer be on and off due to poor reliability.