When you think of shipping containers, you probably picture huge steel boxes that companies use to haul hazardous materials and other cargo from one place to another. While that was originally their primary purpose, their usefulness has broadened. Today, builders are converting shipping containers into a variety of structures for living and commercial purposes.
The trend, called cargotecture, has grown beyond just upcycling retired shipping containers into cost-efficient and secure buildings. Architects are designing buildings that incorporate brand new shipping containers in ambitious projects including unique container houses, schools, portable hotels, restaurants, bridges, hospitals, movie theatres, food trucks, coffee bars, cafes, student housing, offices, and more. The possibilities are endless as these old containers get a new lease on life.
Shipping containers are flood-proof and fire-proof, making them great building material. They are usually used for just 10 to 15 years but can last much longer, making them a great resource for cargotecture.
Let’s take a look at some creative and functional shipping container structures from around the world.
GAD Architecture created a miniature modern-day Turkish bazaar using modular shipping containers on the roof terrace of Trump Towers, Istanbul. The building houses 25 carefully chosen commercial units and gardens in a delightful combination of open and enclosed spaces.
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