the shipping container: a modular, standardized, portable, stack-able, seal-able, human-scale receptacle used to transport a range of cargo all over
the world. they come in two sizes – 20-feet or 40-feet – and hundreds of combinations. in recent years, they have also been discovered in the field of
architecture for their availability, low cost, ease of installment and dynamic capabilities to create comfortable inhabitable spaces. 2012 witnessed
an exploration of the metallic building blocks, pushing their spatial properties to new realms, experimenting with different configurations and
connections to recycling the cold industrial cuboids into useful structures. the following ten projects take our understanding of the shipping container |
and turns it upside down, and onto it’s head, and on its side and in just about any other way that can be thought of.
the project takes advantage of the container’s dimensions to fix it onto a different kind of structure, converting it into a traveling workstation that
makes pizzas just about anywhere. special doors and windows were adjusted into the metallic shell which also withstands the heat of the traditional
using a single container, the mobile cafe uses the crate’s proportions to open the structure to the public for food service. it can be entirely closed
back into a solid box and moved to a new location.
‘snackbox’ by aedifica, times square, new york
placed within a cap-sizable three by three grid metal frame, the building focuses on the containers’ abilities to stack, with a strategic use of solid and
void to create interior and exterior spaces with movable circulation elements that allow for the arrangement of boxes to be changed for future uses.
‘shipping container studio’ by daiken-met architects, gifu, japan
the ‘maison container lille’ residence is a contemporary industrial interpretation of rural architecture. consisting of 8 containers stacked and offset,
the dwelling opens views to the fields through full-height windows that use the built-in doors as shutters to control solar gain and privacy.
‘maison container lille’ by patrick partouche, lille, france
thanks to their customizable nature, the containers have also made their way into the commercial world, where few modifications can turn
the metal boxes into attractive designer buildings designed to pose a distinct aesthetic and accommodate different uses, such as automobile
traffic in this case.
relatively easily obtained and quickly installed, the containers make great candidates for emergency housing. the project responds to a housing
crisis after the 2011 earthquake in japan to temporarily re-build shelters. arranged along a single floor, the containers not only provide private homes,
but also focus around the residual spaces created between them as common areas.
community center for the ‘onagawa temporary container housing’ by shigeru ban architects, onagawa, miyagi, japan
a more complex combination of the two previously listed projects, the temporary ‘city’ is a result of stacked containers that use their structural properties
to span the interstitial space as a roof structures, staggered to allow daylight into the semi-covered space.
‘temporary shipping container city’ by O+A, amsterdam, the netherlands
the temporary art gallery pushes the container’s structural capacities even further, experimenting with cantilevering volumes supported
by slender columns creating an interesting stacking of masses used to display art in their original steel skin.
‘GAD’ by MMW architects in tjuvholmen, norway
the hotel experiments with the deconstruction of the solitary container to create different qualities of light and views on a campus of 35 units fitted for high-end
‘Xiang Xiang Pray House’ by beijing tonghe shanzhi landscape design, xhanxi province, china
jumping to a much larger scale, the arrangement of the 78 containers makes greater use of their structures, cutting larger voids into the envelope
to open large continuous spaces with large windows; smaller perforations in the skin play with ventilation and interior lighting effects.
‘tony’s farm’ by playze, shanghai, china