Reading about this it did throw up a few issues as I look at the room and its functional. I can understand the price tag seeming expensive but what is it compared to local market rates? You see in the Philippines renting by the night is generally P1,600 for a room in my area but you can rent an entire apartment for P6,000+ per month. The issue is though most people seem to gripe that the P6,000 apartment doesn’t have hot water etc. etc. at the same time none of them do that’s why they are P6,000!
Now the issue with this shipping container courtyard room was more to do with the fact they didn’t want to stay in a shipping container reading through the lines. Bit like people saying they don’t like eating something even though they have never tasted it before. So was off to a negative start to begin with. Fact is this is probably better condition than the main rooms that were available in the main hotel as its surfaces are all wash down etc. So personally can’t see a problem with it.
I do come across these type of complaints very often amongst expats though as their expectations are often well above what is available locally. Even when locals put themselves out to help people often doing a lot of running around for free people still complain.
Its something I was discussing with another expat recently when talking about riding town to town as they often go for expensive hotels at P1,600+ a night. Me I can’t justify the cost for somewhere I am not on holiday. Motorbike riding is about roughing it and enjoying the environment around us. The Trip to Negros for example crashing out in a P200 hut (p100 each!) on the coast I prefer any day to an air con room in some resort. Not tight with the cash just that I like to experience real life not the “glossy magazine version”.
So was a bit disappointed with the author on this article as he could have been a bit more positive on the container courtyard but instead just slated it with sarcasm, you can read it here
The viability of shipping container homes is something that I am constantly finding an uphill battle with as many people dismiss the idea as unrealistic. I think tied with the peak oil issues and population explosion of the planet although people want the big spaces they are used to with all the gadgets I think its more realistic to see people downsizing in future years as the cost of living increases. Its good to see though this snippet in mainstream TV showing that shipping containers aren’t only viable but also already here.
You will often come across negativity on building shipping container homes as people generally see a big metal box with a logo written up the side of it but at the same time these same people will never understand the concept of why you are doing it in the first place.
At the same though nobody says it has to be a simple box design although for many they choose this type because of environmental reasons or budget. Personally if even a box on the outside it doesn’t mean you can’t grow plants on a trellis to give a bit of shade as well as a practical wall cover. For me its not just about looking at a box but more the thought of children getting a Christmas present disregarding the present for the large box it came in to fill 101 dreams all day with the box the gift came in. Shipping containers offer that for the person who isn’t the architect or house builder a box to build from, a modular piece of a puzzle that they can envisage their ideas and turn from a simple or complex idea into a home that has their personal stamp on it. I’m an environmentalist, i’m a designer, I simply love living in my shipping container! whatever it is the point is that metal box became a home for generations and I haven’t heard anyone yet complain about living in one everyone seems more than happy and if that’s the case then I too will be happy to be “living in a box”.
As I have mentioned already on another post I was impressed with the Chinese design for the Solar Decathlon. The Shipping container Y Container home submitted by Shanghai’s Tongji University embraces cargotecture in a modern way. Not only with the home design shape but also the six recycled shipping container structure also is easy to transport, energy efficient and incorporates sustainable technology.
The design offers up an off grid way of life with three veranda areas as well as an open porch. Wooden screens extend the facade of the perimeter and can be rolled back to open up the interior.
The roof as like many other shipping container home designs utilizes them for photovoltaic panels but what is a little different is the heat build up is transferred into the shipping containers floor for heating as well as heating water. Vacuum insulation has also been utilized to help with heat loss and gain.
The icing on the cake being the Y shape itself, not just a gimmick but it offers up natural ventilation as it can tunnel in air from whichever direction a wind or breeze is available. Hot air meets at the central triangular area where the containers join and is ventilated out while the cool air continues to circulate.
Its designed round cheap home designs for couples in Shanghai. Yet this same design and model could be used anywhere by anyone. I often here critics talking of “I couldn’t live in that” when they refer to shipping container homes but at the same time they aren’t thinking of people trying to get on the housing ladder or people that are looking for a low cost form of sustainable housing. I pretty much love everything the house has to offer, its well thought through and should be a home that goes into production.
Amazon web services doesn’t really openly discuss its datacentre’s and infrastructure for their web presence. With cloud computing currently being one of the biggest developments on the web to date its also something that relies heavily on data centre’s to make it viable.
Engineer James Hamilton produced this presentation at an open house conference showing how the company utilizes modular technology for its data centre.
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.
Its a concept I have been toying with for several years and pretty much ironed out most of the issues involved. The big question is how many other people are interested in setting up a container village?
The photo is of a development in Texas and its for photography purposes only the designs I am looking at will be different but just want to get the idea across.
The development would be a mix of foreign and locals with an interest in sustainable living and projects. Doesn’t all have to revolve round what we are doing locally as the idea is to have likeminded people in an environment that encourages green living as well as hopefully throw up some new ideas.
Things like along the sides of the containers doing vertical gardening to give a food source as well as shade and maximising space.
Aquaponics, permaculture, solar and wind energy and possibly a water mill to produce localised lighting in the community are all ideas I want to bring to the table.
Don’t want to live amongst a group of drop out hippies? Guess what neither do I, I am looking at sustainable development because of the fact its self sufficiency offers up a lifestyle that people have forgotten or feel they can no longer afford. When you start looking at what life really costs you and how things like having a car to get a better job that is further away from home that ends up with a debt on the car as well as expensive petrol which nobody ever sits and calculates how much they would save by simply finding a lower paid job nearby. Or in my case the internet. The internet is awash with Internet “people” who simply don’t need the binds of expensive living and having a community that is based on technology as well as having several people of a similar mindset allows methods to role out across the web in different ways. It also allows people to improve their profit margins and in turn the whole project becomes more viable in another direction. In reality I am looking at building something that will not only last but will be mimicked by others. Food costs are rising yet again and although a lot of it is fake most comes down to the fact everything is moving via freight of some kind pushing demand on oil further. What about picking tomatoes from the garden how much energy does that burn? maybe a lettuce from your aquaponics setup?
The whole concept is people helping people not only in producing food because of different levels of gardening experience but also livelihoods.
But stop hold the press! Foreigners can’t own the land in the Philippines! and your right they can’t but I am looking to form up a community on land my wife will be the legal owner of but everyone has 50 year leases with a guaranteed 50 year extension on it. We sub lot a large area and this way you as the “home owner” control your piece of land there will be annual costs involved due to taxes, security and other things but I am looking to make this a long term commitment that encourages people to stay for life.
Singapore being forward thinking has not gone for waiting for people to come and try the cuisine but to bring the cuisine to the world stage by introducing its mobile kitchen/restaurant. On top of the obvious food trade there is also a Global Chef Exchange on offer to encourage exchanging of ideas and expand food opportunities. There is also and has been opportunity to meet the organisers and representatives from Singapore’s food producers to help expand trade and understanding in what Singapore has to offer on the plate.
The 20ft shipping container is fitted out as a modern kitchen to deal with the vast interest in the food cuisine both new and old. The tour began in London but is also doing the rounds in Paris,Moscow,New York,Hong Kong, Shanghai, Delhi, Dubai and also Syndey.
A great idea for spreading culinary tastes and delights from Singapore as well as a unique talking point.
Dates and venues of Singapore Takeout tour:
London ( 9 – 11 Jun 2011) Chef Janice Wong (2am:dessertbar) Paris ( 30 Jun – 2 Jul 2011) Chef André Chiang (Restaurant André) Moscow (15 – 17 Jul 2011) Chef Ryan Clift (Tippling Club) Chef Daniel Sia (The Disgruntled Chef) New York (16 – 18 Sep 2011) Chef Malcolm Lee (Candlenut Kitchen) Hong Kong (10 – 12 Nov 2011) Chef Armin Leitgeb (Les Amis) Shanghai (1 – 3 Dec 2011) Chef Willin Low (Wild Rocket) Delhi (13 – 15 Jan 2012) Chef Benjamin Seck (True Blue Cuisine) Dubai (19 – 20 Feb 2012) Chef Haikal Johari (winner of Channel News Asia’s “Perfect Meal” in 2009) Sydney (30 Mar – 1 Apr 2012) Team from Iggy’s
Its an odd setup living in a shipping container home to others who can’t see the advantages of doing so as its also a life choice as well as every other reason that makes us decide to do it. But who is right and who is wrong? Well you will get every excuse why its not a great idea and in fact many people will think your crazy. Odd thing is though after its constructed and they have visited I do wonder how many minds change in an instant as it becomes practical and moves from a box to a home opening up the possibilities of options to them they didn’t see before.
For myself I really don’t mind peoples negative perception on the subject as I have yet to hear anyone who has either lived in one or used one as a temporary home e.g. troops in Iraq complain about it as those who have used them can see the benefits over other designs and materials. The recycling side of things also interests me but as I live in Asia its a bit of an odd one as most leave here never to return sat on dock sides all over the world where import outstrips exports.
If you don’t believe in it that’s fine as well as everyone is free to make their own choices that’s the whole point of life if we were all regime we might as well be bar coded and have a lobotomy.
The one thing people are guaranteed to say about shipping container homes is they look like shipping containers even when finished. Thing is a lot of that is because people choose to show the industrial pre-use of the buildings stock as a reminder to others its recycled but in many other cases its purely down to the building functions and that’s enough. But to encourage other people’s interest in doing the same with the excess containers out there ideally we need to be finishing the projects and beautifying to show not only hey I have a shipping container home but also a beautiful home and the garden areas are one of the areas that can do that without too much investment (unless you want to of course).
So I have provided a few photos below that show good use of small garden areas and hopefully they can help people get creative with their garden spaces.