Modular Construction – Innovative Container Use Around the World
Modular construction using recycled shipping containers are an excellent way to ensure that your home grows with your family. Recycling shipping containers is an eco friendly way of modular construction that allows you to add or remove rooms or building elements as required. Around the world people are moving towards pre fabricated, durable, modular homes, offices and even shopping malls using shipping containers. These buildings are ideal for off-grid living with their low energy footprint and portability, with the ability to be used as your primary residence, simple guest houses or extra office space.
Containerisation of transport has resulted in a large availability of shipping containers in various sizes and configurations ready to be converted into cost effective structures. Containers have been used in a wide range of buildings including: School Buildings, Urban and Rural Homes, Apartment and Office Buildings, Artists Studios, Shopping Malls, Prisons, Workshops & Hotels – the construction possibilities are literally endless.
DIY Modular Homes with Shipping Containers:
The home handyman and DIY mentality is a core part of our culture, and what better way to exemplify this than by building your own home from recycled materials such as shipping containers. By building with shipping containers you will not only reduce the costs of your home but also its environmental impact through recycling idle shipping containers and even speed up construction time by up to 40%.
External aspects of the shipping containers can be modified in such a way that the average passerby won’t even recognise it as a container, or you may choose to leave it with its original shape for that rugged, industrial look.
Advantages of Modular Construction Using Shipping Containers:
- Strong and Durable: Shipping containers are designed to withstand the harsh conditions across multiple different climates at sea.
- Modular and Scalable: Just like the lego blocks you played with as a child, shipping containers offer a modular and scalable method of construction that can grow with the needs of your family of business. Need an extra room – just add an extra container on top!
- Lower labour costs: Shipping containers come prefabricated, meaning less time spent on construction and more money to spend on finishing the building to a high standard.
- Easy to transport on and off site: Shipping containers are built to be moved, they can easily be transported by truck, train, helicopter or boat to virtually any location on the planet.
- Easy availability and low cost
Three Innovative Uses for Shipping Containers in Construction:
Cashel Mall – Christchurch, New Zealand
In February 2011 two large earthquakes were responsible for the destruction of most of Christchurch (New Zealand’s second largest city) and its central business district. Just six months later a brand new mall was open for business in Cashel Street, known locally as the container mall, or by its more official name “Re:START“. Re:START took the modular construction concept further and created and entire business precinct out of brightly coloured, stacked and interconnected shipping containers. The project was able to provide a much needed boost into the local economy through allowing locals to work and shop, as well as the positivity needed in post earthquake recovery. The projects use of shipping containers allowed the area to open quickly, with minimal construction requirements compared to traditional methods. Re:START is now home to over 50 retailers, gardens, cafes and more and is a prime example of the versatility of shipping containers as a modular construction method.
The Cabin Resort – Langkawi Island, Malaysia
The Cabin is located on Langkawi Island’s popular beach Pantai Cenang. The resort is made up of, you guessed it – 11 shipping containers that have been repurposed into 22 separate guest rooms containing beds, ensuite bathrooms, TVs, air conditioning and private decks to give you resort quality accommodation at guest house prices. Not bad for what were originally shipping containers.
Department of Corrections – Victoria, Australia
Last year the Victorian corrections department announced that they would be introducing prison cells constructed from modular shipping containers. Using shipping containers the Department was able to quickly and cost effectively add 100 beds using only 50 shipping containers within a few months. The modular construction of these containers allow for the humane incarceration of prisoners and come with showers, toilets, fridges and air conditioning.
What interesting uses have you read about for shipping containers? Let us know in the comments.