Ranch Workspace - Mobile Shipping Container Architecture Studio / Office

Floor Plan
About Juan Barbero Arquitecto

ProjectRanch Workspace
ArchitectsJuan Barbero Arquitecto
ContainersOne 40 ft
PhotographsLuis Barandarian
LocationCity Bell, Argentina

Description by Juan Barbero Arquitecto

As a result of a series of projects linked to creating flexible spaces from the use of disused shipping containers, a ranch emerged. A mobile device ready to function as a home, office, workshop, showroom, hotel room, etc. In this particular case, an architecture studio differentiates itself from the traditional urban offices by creating a more relaxed workspace linked to nature. With the aim of reducing the impact on the environment, off-site construction is proposed, optimizing construction time and resources for its construction.

For it to be assembled, services are placed at each of the ends, solving the basic needs to live, work, rest, etc. This decision allows us to give a better proportion to the flexible space and a direct link with the place. Inside, wood appears as the leading material, providing warmth and thermal comfort, in addition to contrasting with the exterior, which is painted black, trying to go as unnoticed as possible on the site.

The Pitch - Shipping Container Hospitality Complex - Retail, Food, and Work Space - Austin, Texas

The Pitch acts a bridge, connecting a business park to Austin FC’s new training campus through a series of connected experiences that represent Authentic Austin. The space serves as an active promenade, day and night, that combines retail, food, and work space along an undulating pathway through the natural landscape.

Floor Plans / Drawings
About Mark Odom Studio - Architects
About Austin Commercial and Citadel Development Services - Builders

ProjectThe Pitch
ArchitectsMark Odom Studio
BuilderAustin Commercial and Citadel Development Services
Area21780 sqm
ManufacturersEcosense, Falcon Structures, Makehaus Design and Fabrication Studio, Structural Wood Systems, WE-EF
Lead ArchitectMark Odom
Landscape ArchitectTBG Partners
Structural EngineerLeap Structures
MEP EngineerBay & Associates
Civil EngineerLandDev Consulting
Container ConsultantFalcon Structures
FabricatorMakehaus Design and Fabrication Studio
DeveloperKarlin Real Estate
General ManagementTeam Orbis
Food ServiceCorner Kick Hospitality
BrandingLauren Dickens Studios
PhotographyCasey Dunn
LocationAustin, Texas, United States

Description by Mark Odom Studio

Mark Odom Studio repurposed shipping containers to create a one-of-a-kind experience at Austin’s exciting new hospitality complex Parmer Ponds The Pitch. The Pitch -- Austin’s distinct hospitality and entertainment complex for Austin FC soccer fans and the community debuted this spring. The two-acre site is a one-of-a-kind destination hub for retail, food, office and outdoor gatherings served from flexible two-story repurposed shipping containers. The unique project was designed by Austin award-winning architecture and interiors firm, Mark Odom Studio.

“The developer, Karlin Real Estate, was interested in using shipping containers; they had not worked with a container concept before and really wanted to lean into the idea,” says Mark Odom, founding principal of Mark Odom Studio. “We have previously studied the use of containers for commercial, retail and multi-family designs all of which were un-built; we feel that The Pitch is the first project of its kind in Austin and the region.”

The complex comprises 23 repurposed shipping containers of two standard container modular sizes: 8 X 20 foot and 8 X 40 foot. The containers are stacked to create two stories and then clustered into five separate building pods, with varying building square footages, that function differently for the users while creating a dense visual and physical experience and view onto the landscape.

“Each building pod is organized and stacked differently while they all use the same custom detailing, material and color. This allows the focus on the true form of each container to be consistent,” says Odom. Ground level containers serve as food and beverage outlets for premiere local food vendors. Second level containers are multifunctional as viewing decks, interior conditioned gathering spaces, private office space, private party rooms and Austin FC game watching parties. Custom stairs, vertical tube steel railings, and overhead trellises were carefully designed and executed tying together each level.

Three 40-foot-tall containers were placed on ends to serve as wayfinding nodes from a far -- while functioning as restroom facilities and electrical rooms at ground level: each has 40-foot interior vertical perspective views to the skylight above. A mass timber pavilion with custom steel apertures further anchors the program between the Austin FC practice stadium and The Pitch. The once flat site was heavily landscaped to help the containers nestle and absorb the grade changes. As each pod was curated differently, the experience and views will also entice users to walk around and explore.

To achieve the level of execution needed on this unique project, Mark Odom Studio worked closely with the developers, Leap Structures, Citadel, and Makehaus. “We approached this project as a collaborative team effort and the complexity required all disciplines to problem solve together from feasibility schematics through construction. The timeline was fast, and the team was pushing from start to finish; The entire team was crucial in making the deadline,” says Odom. Additionally, Mark Odom Studio handled the exterior and interior finish selections as well as the interior and exterior furniture selections and installation.

Cocoa Research Station for Chocolate Manufacturing Company, Costa Rica

About Containerwerk

ProjectResearch Station Costa Rica
Architect and BuilderContainerwerk
ClientRausch Schokoladen GmbH
Installation Time4 days
LocationCosta Rica

This beautiful cocoa research station in Costa Rica is made out of four 40-foot shipping containers, which were mechanically foamed and upgraded in Germany and insulated according to EnEV standards.

Two containers form the basis. Two further containers are placed crosswise to each other. The upper two containers contain sleeping and living units for up to eight people. Large glass elements are inserted at the ends of the containers, with a view over the rainforest and the cocoa plants. The entire upper floor is surrounded by a terrace made of regional wood.

On the ground floor, half of a shipping container is equipped as a bathroom and changing area for the workers on site. The other half contains the fully equipped laboratory where Rausch can conduct research. The second container on the ground floor becomes the lounge with a kitchen area and large dining table and a couch area. A meeting place for everyone. The two containers are about six meters apart. In this space a garage will be installed.

The cocoa estate lies in the middle of the jungle and within a biotope network. Since the Rausch GmbH in Costa Rica basically pursues an ecological concept, the construction of the estate from used shipping containers is an obvious option. Due to the high degree of prefabrication of the containers in Germany, there are hardly any construction emissions on site, such as noise, dust or aisles for construction site logistics. The impact on the original nature of the region is kept to a minimum and the building can be dismantled at any time without leaving any residue. In addition, the solution is completely self-sufficient. This means that the buildings do not have to be connected to any infrastructure. Electricity is produced by a solar system and the building network has a septic tank. In a second stage, a water treatment plant will be installed. This means that research can be carried out completely independently and in the middle of the rainforest.

Escape Den - Shipping Container Home with Decks on I-Beam Steel Frame

Escape Den shipping container home contains the kitchen and dinning area on the ground floor, while the living room and bedrooms are situated on the two upper levels. Three spaces are connected via a set of stairs which also connects the home’s various decks and terraces supported by I-beam steel frame.

Construction Process
Floor Plans / Drawings
About River & Rain

ProjectEscape Den
ArchitectureRiver & Rain
Area134 sqm
Architects In ChargeKazi Fida Islam, Md. Abdul Awyal, Sumaiya Shameem, Mousumi Kabir, Irtefa Iradat, Abid Khan
ClientTanjim Haque, Asma Sultana
Structural ConsultantRuhul Alam
Electrical ConsultantEng. Asad
PhotographyMaruf Raihan, Hasan Saifuddin Chandan, Snahasis Saha
LocationDhaka, Bangladesh

Description by architects


Concept of space evoked on three main grounds; to create a hymn of solitary through a more contemporary yet quirky design approach with a time worthy construction period. The space was considered as the simplest of its expression. Neither form dominated nor space, a perfect mingling and cohesion to generate ooze sophistication. To create a subtle experience of one’s being and non-being at the same moment, the project adorns emptiness with grace. Space here is not stagnant; it’s allowed to flow with its highest ardencies, form is only the resonance of space.


The location is mostly secluded of settlements at present and therefore remains little less noise. The serene place is a perfect hide out from every day hustle-bustle of busy urban life.

The I-beam steel frame skeleton is finely embellished with four pieces of shipping containers. The longest one is adjoined with two, forming the bedrooms. The rustic romanticism those containers evokes, are taken delightfully by the architect to recreate a place that just impeccably out of the world, surreal.

Triple height atrium with green foliage of almond tree is indeed a solemn beauty for anyone who steps inside. The soft screening of vines in the top will soon be a veil of green velvet. The embedded greenery on container top and I-beam steel frame acts as buffers to lessen the heat penetration.

Project technology

Extruded steel structure embraced the container gracefully. The whole frame was erected part by part as an independent system where those metal boxes were befitted in between the infrastructure. For ultimate makeovers of containers and to make them livable, necessary cut, holes and adjoining for facade treatment have been done after the accurate placement in desired level to avoid the fragility.

The hefty look of those containers has become dramatically airier with some skillful ensemble of architectural details. The floated platforms of the house, intertwining stairs and diverse direction of container placement have made the project more visually eye-catching.


The off track material was shipping container itself. The significance also lied beneath for its consideration of reuse, thus initiating a sustainable approach in design. Major inventory of materials are of reused version.

Constraints and solutions achieved

Apart from the structural execution, the complex procedure of the spatial transformation of shipping container into a cozy home stay was a substantial design constrain. The non-enchanting and austere look of hard core shipping containers had to transform into a ideal, cozy built form. The interior has slits and cut through to add volume to the space. The scale of individual container has been maneuvered considering both internal and external space dialogues with it. Exposed steel structures framed the invisible walls thus creating with a harmony of visible containers.

Details of landscaping

Clearly the landscaping has been kept bare minimum to enjoy the enchantment of the house. The open vast front yard is clung to adorn the structure; hence, created the perfect soliloquy for this outskirt den.

Educan Dog Training Centre - Shipping Container School for Dogs, Humans and Other Species, Spain

Educan Dog Training Centre is, among other things, also an experiment that shows that agricultural architecture, usually considered minor by the discipline itself, can also be place of architectural exploration and innovation.

Floor Plans / Drawings
Location and Contact Info
About Eeestudio
About Lys Villalba

ProjectEducan Dog Training Centre
ArchitectureEeestudio, Lys Villalba
Area300 sqm
Architects In ChargeEnrique Espinosa, Lys Villalba
ClientTraining Educan
Metallic ConstructionsMiguel Torrejon
Technical ArchitectJavier Renones Marin
Facilities EngineeringAlberto Espinosa
Technical ConsultantJorge Lopez Hidalgo
CollaboratorsMaria Paola Marciano, Irene Dominguez
Construction companyAlji Integral Services
Structural EngineeringMechanism
LocationBrunete, Spain

Description by architects

01. A multi-species architecture. Eva, Carlos, the Malinois dogs Bicho and Bomba, the Harris owl, five families of swifts, six of kestrels and twenty sparrows, are companion species. All of them live and learn together in this shipping container building 30 kilometers west of Madrid. Located between farm fields, in a rural environment that has been altered in recent decades by urbanization and intensive agriculture with pesticides, the Educan school is testing how to recover the environmental conditions of this ecosystem.

Its architecture is a multispecies design. While pairs of dogs and humans practice training in the two main classrooms, the birds nest in the nest-facades on the upper floor, with the ideal views and orientations for them. The small birds of prey feed on rodents, keeping their balance with crops and other plants; Smaller birds and field bats, which also inhabit the letters on the south facade, feed on insects, including mosquitoes that carry some canine diseases, and are part of the pollination cycles of flowers and plants in the adjoining fields. Sparrows have joined this self-regulating ecosystem in an unplanned way, nesting in the circular holes on the edges of the shipping containers.

Non-humans are the center of the design. The floors, usually designed for people with shoes, adapt to the pads and joints of canine paws — the training rooms are covered with artificial grass with an elastomeric base, approved for dog training, in removable rolls; the theory lecture classrooms are covered with exposed arid concrete made of semi-polished river boulders. The average height of eyes drops from 160 to 50 cm. The interior openings are raised to heights greater than one meter to avoid dog distractions; the louvered shutters shade the south facade, leaving enough space under them for dogs to pass through to the outside, where the rainwater that falls on the roof is collected in large drinking bowls for dogs and birds. The word becomes bark, and the interior surfaces are lined with sound-insulating pyramids with high acoustic absorption to minimize echo, noise and reverberation.

02. Material crossovers and construction innovation. Diverse materials are used in this building, combining different construction techniques, trades and production systems: from material ecology and waste reduction in the reuse of shipping containers, to the adaptability and thermal inertia of concrete, smooth and undulating formwork made of shipping container wall sheets; from standardization and optimization of industrial sheet metal panels to precision of CNC cut laminated wood joints; from the standardization of basic modules such as 40'HC shipping containers to the hand-crafted ironwork work that allows to customize details, assemblies or new elements such as bench legs, lamps or large sliders that open and close spaces; from automated air conditioning systems, to manual bioclimatic control elements such as perforated shutters or roller blinds; from the material weight of the foundation and concrete wall to the lightness of the rest of the prefabricated and pre-assembled elements.

Lots.Sathon - Cozy Shipping Container Coffee Shop, Bar, Cafe and Restaurant, Bangkok, Thailand

Hidden cozy green space and coffee in the heart of Bangkok’s financial district.

Location and contact info

People like the cozy atmosphere of this shipping container coffee shop. There are seats by the window if you want to receive a lot of natural light. Visitors come solo, come in pairs, come in groups. There are many types of tables to accommodate. Including the outdoor seating area. On days when the sunlight is not very strong, it's nice to sit. Or you can sit inside in the air-conditioned shipping container space.

Municipal Public Library Made of Used Shipping Containers, Colombia

Floor Plan
About EContainers

Architects in ChargeIvan Patarroyo, Jeronimo Arias
Area116 sq m (1250 sq ft)
ContainersFive: Three 20 ft + Two 40 ft
PhotographyAndres Osorio
LocationSanta Helena, Mesetas, Meta, Colombia

Description by architects

EContainers develops innovative spaces in design and comfort based on sustainable and renewable architecture that adapt to all types of industry, thus minimizing global environmental impacts since it gives maritime containers a second architectural life when they reach borders of their transport life. This company develops an architecture with containers that is a green and respectful architecture with the environment since it meets the bases of sustainability "3R: Recycle, Reuse and Reduce".

For this project, they developed a municipal public library requested by the Colombian Ministry of Culture to deliver to the Santa Helena village in the municipality of Mesetas, Meta. This project consists of 5 containers, 3 of 20 feet and 2 of 40 feet, which were restored and adapted for the needs of the municipality in cultural matters.

The shipping container public library has solar panels for its operation and was equipped with approximately 1,400 books, supplied by the National Libraries, with the aim of facilitating the circulation and access to information towards greater knowledge and strengthening the reading and writing processes.

The construction of municipal public libraries, apart from promoting the use of new construction systems that are easy to transport, easy to assemble, economic in their sustainability and rapid in their execution, also contributes to encouraging reading in the population and to more people, especially children and young people, become more interested in cultural and historical issues.

According to Andres Valencia, CEO of EContainers, “Cargotecture or construction with containers responds to the concept of sustainable and renewable architecture that adapts to all types of industry. Replacing traditional construction with modular construction allows us to reduce global environmental impacts and contribute to building a better future”.

The focus of this company is to reach areas of difficult access given the complexity of their geographical conditions, it becomes a challenge and a driving force to continue reaching these, where others do not dare to try. In this way, EContainres is committed to sustainable and innovative solutions, adapting to new dynamics, seeking to protect the planet, setting an example of sustainability with the highest quality and construction standards and adapting them to every need. In addition, it invites other companies to become aware of the environment and contribute to the planet, having environmental sustainability and circular economy as a pillar.

Weekend Retreat Three 20ft Shipping Containers 50 sqm House on Steel Stilts and Concrete Pile Foundations for Anchoring House to Hillside, Victoria, Australia

Floor plans / drawings
About studio edwards

ProjectHouse 28
Architecturestudio edwards
Area50 sq m (540 sq ft)
ContainersThree 20 ft
PhotographyTony Gorsevski
LocationSurf Coast, Wye River, Victoria, Australia

Description by architects

A shipping container house on the Surf Coast in Wye River, Victoria, Australia. Designed as a weekend retreat and made from three 20ft shipping containers. Two connect to form the living space with toilet, laundry and entry. The third acts as a sleeping wing with two bedrooms, toilet and shower. Connected by a external deck on steel stilts which sit on deep concrete pile foundations - anchoring the house to the hillside.

Internally the spaces are lined with marine plywood. Externally they are insulated and clad with galvanised steel sheeting. The northern face of the shipping container house has fixings to allow for planting wires to connect to the ground, encouraging native plants to grow over the house.

The Southern facade is predominately glazed with a series of double glazed doors and windows opening onto the decking which looks southwards through the trees towards the ocean. A green roof planted with native dichondra sits above providing additional thermal insulation, blending into the surrounding landscape.

Hurricane-Proof Shipping Container House Built after 2017 Category 5 Hurricane, Florida

It is no secret that stacked shipping containers on large ocean ships successfully withstand extremely strong winds on the high seas. Therefore, the strength properties of this shipping container house allow it to withstand the next hurricanes like Category 5 Hurricane Irma in 2017. Climate change makes us think that Florida will still have to deal with similar terrible hurricanes in the future.

3D Model
Construction Process
Location and Contact Info

ProjectPrince Road Container House
Builder and ownerRob DePiazza
Area150 sq m (1600 sq ft)
Containers9 x 40 ft
LocationSt. Augustine, Florida, United States

When Hurricane Irma hit Florida in September 2017, Rob DePiazza lost everything. An old tree crashed into the house of the artist from St. Augustine and made it uninhabitable. But instead of giving up, De Piazza drew fresh artistic inspiration from the disaster and turned a long-held dream into reality: to build a house out of containers.

Description by owner

I purchased the original house that resides on this property back in 1988. In 2017, Hurricane Irma caused a large oak tree to snap at the base and destroy the house (while we were in it!), which led to the construction of my current home, the Prince Road Container House. Within two days of the house being destroyed I made the decision to build a container house. Choosing to build a house out of shipping containers meant I had to serve as the general contractor hiring all the sub-contractors and more importantly do much of the work myself. This wasn’t a problem since I had rehabbed a 1908 commercial building occupied by my screen-printing business and other residential projects over the years. Planning unexpectedly took nine months, at which point I ran out of the housing money provided by my insurance policy; this put further strain on funding. Construction was finally completed February 2020.

The overall theme of the hurricane-proof shipping container house is to reveal and celebrate materials and construction techniques that are typically concealed. It starts with the exposed corrugated steel exterior walls of the container from which the paint was removed to reveal the raw core ten steel and the natural corrosion. On the inside I revealed key interior walls that did not require insulation. With the exception of the painted wall in the main living space, I retained the original interior paint of the container along with the patina acquired over the many years of its use; the scuffs, scrapes, and dents that tell the story of the many transatlantic crossings made and the cargo transported.

The list of details of the Prince Road Container House is endless, many of which are intended to give pause to the routine of daily living; from the custom hanging lights I made from ’50s era streetlights to the mild steel kitchen backsplash I installed to display the hundreds of refrigerator magnets we’ve collected from our travels around the world, and finally the “upside down” container whose floor is now the ceiling. In the end, I wanted to create a home that’s not just a house, but a vibrant, cheerful, creative, and inviting space that celebrates living and doesn’t take itself too seriously; a coda I have tried to live by for as long as I can remember.

Common Ground - World’s Largest Modular Shipping Container Shopping Mall Complex, South Korea

COMMON GROUND is South Korea’s first and the world’s largest shipping container shopping mall complex built with 200 shipping containers. It redefines the conventions of retail platforms by reinterpreting the role of culture, and focusing on connecting people for the sake of creating meaningful value for all involved.

Floor Plans / Drawings
Brand Development, Brand Design, Visual System Design
About Urbantainer
About Office 53427

ProjectCommon Ground
ArchitectUrbantainer, Office 53427
Area5300 sqm
Structural EngineerPAN Structural Engineering Inc., Gaon ENG
BuilderKolon Environmental Service Co.Ltd.
LandscapeLIVESCAPE, Seungjong Yoo
LocationSeoul, South Korea

Description by architects

Common Ground is the result of an experiment of revitalising unused land in the middle of the city. By applying prefab methods, e.g. producing modules in a factory, transporting them to the construction site and assembling them on-site, it was possible to reduce the construction time of the 5300 m2 building to five months.

In order to maximise the usage efficiency of the elongated rectangular shaped land, the architectural form is based on a center square connecting two buildings.

At the traffic-heavy main street side, container modules were stacked to give the building exterior more impact and draw attention from passers-by. The mass on the opposite side has been kept open to naturally connect to the visitor flow of the surrounding environment and invite people in more easily.

The two buildings, STREET MARKET and MARKET HALL, are both based on container architecture but are designed with different characteristics in mind.

The containers of the Street Market are arranged in a protruding configuration, highlight the individual modules and give the exterior more impact. The Market Hall is made of 12m long-span container modules which are used as separated shopping booths. Same- sized modules as roof of the hall create a usable terrace area on the third floor.

Platoon Kunsthalle and Pop Kudamm - Mixed Use Shipping Container Temporary Buildings

About Graft
About Platoon

H-Container Home: 40 ft Shipping Container + Extended Space for Kitchen Cabinets + Covered Deck, Argentina

Floor Plans / Drawings
About Parada Cantilo Estudio

ArchitectParada Cantilo Estudio
Area36 sqm (390 sqft)
Containers1 x 40 ft
LocationManuel B. Gonnet, Argentina
PhotographyLuis Barandiaran

Description by architects

Within a family property, we needed to build a minimum dwelling for one of the family members.

On a plot of limited dimensions, a "container" is located with the challenge of being able to transform it into a space that fulfills all the functions required by inhabiting through a series of operations.

The dimensions were determined by the study of the existing artifact, and directly influenced the design, its geometry, horizontal and longitudinal development, creating the pattern of another intervention which was attached to the "container" on both sides by two prisms. One fulfills the services function (extended space for kitchen cabinets and bathroom area), and the other serves as a link between the outer space, giving a sense of continuity to the social part of the cabin (covered deck).

The other areas (living and sleeping) are specified through the service nucleus that articulates the uses of the shipping container home.

Regarding its materiality, the interior space is a warm feeling box defined through a eucalyptus plating on all its sides. Inside it, the white service volume.

The transformation of a given object conceived not for an inhabitable space was a challenge. In that space, we had to hold the life of a person according to their way, trying to achieve spatial continuity throughout its journey and ensuring the interior-exterior relationship as a design strategy.

The Cargo District - Shipping Container Community, Wilmington, NC

Coworx At The Cargo District
Auggie & Zo - Shipping Container Boutique in The Cargo District
The Plant Outpost
Alcove Beer Garden
Location and contact info
About Romero Architecture
About LS Smith

ProjectThe Cargo District
ArchitectRomero Architecture
General contractorLS Smith, Inc
LocationWilmington, North Carolina, United States

Romero Architecture

Drawing inspiration from French architect Le Corbusier and his idea that a home is a machine for living, Romero worked to bring that theory and aesthetic into the design of The Cargo District.

From unique mixed-use projects to local headquarters, the region has been growing with the work of many innovative building designers such as Romero.

He’s among the pool of local architects bringing unique touches to developments that are changing the Wilmington skyline and leaving a more modern mark on the city’s commercial architecture through either building reuse, expansion or new construction.

Starting in 2016, Romero joined forces with Leslie Smith, the developer who had the vision for The Cargo District - Shipping Container Community at South 16th and Queen streets. Romero helped bring Smith’s ideas to light.

“It’s a bold development,” said Romero, who brought his architecture firm to Wilmington in 2006.

His work with Smith on The Cargo District brought this urban mixed-use development that played off the trend of using shipping container architecture in a commercial setting.

The project includes nine, one-bedroom live/work units, each with nearly 600 square feet of living space. The building’s key pieces – the 20- foot shipping containers – cost about $30,000 each to rehab for this job, he said.

In his plans, Romero sketched windows at the container’s end to bring light into the spaces, in addition to slot windows, which were designed to minimize cuts to the container’s steel structure. The wooden floors of the container were also refurbished, he said.

There were a lot of city zoning and planning issues “because they have certain codes in this district that won’t allow exposed container sides,” Romero said of the challenges. “So, I had to come up with a way to semi-disguise it but not completely cover the container because we were trying to celebrate the container too.”

“This city has a long history of ships and water and shipping containers … and so there’s something unique in that it ties that history to the modern usage of these things, and I think that’s rare,” Romero said. “The area is somewhat industrial, and that vibe carries through this project nicely.”

1600 sqft Modular Shipping Container Home on Pillars/Stilts on a Steep Lot, Stockholm, Sweden

Floor Plans / Drawings
Construction Process
About Builders/Owners
About Måns Tham Arkitektkontor

ArchitectureMåns Tham Arkitektkontor
Structural EngineerEgil Bartos, Ramboll
Area150 sqm (1600 sqft)
LocationStockholm, Sweden
PhotographyStaffan Andersson

Description by architects

This 1600 sqft shipping container home was built of eight assembled, 20′ and 40′ re-used, high cube shipping containers. The house is built on a steep lot next to a lake, outside of Stockholm. There was a ban on dynamite for the site and there was no room for a slab, just a steep canyon where a lot of rainwater flows toward the lake. That is why the modular home stands on pillars or stilts and land light on the terrain. The structural walls of the containers allowed the upper level to be larger than the entrance level footprint. This way the building adjusts to the V-shaped natural canyon of the site. The clients, a truck driver and a therapist with three kids, have built the house mostly by themselves with big help from their father and father in law who is a skilled welder and used to run a mechanic workshop. The interior is a composition of rare finds and re-used building components.

A shipping container is not a great starting point for a home because of its limited width, 2,4 m. Also, as soon as you take out any part of the corrugated walls between two containers to make a wider room they lose their structural strength. Therefore we had to put a lot of effort into deciding which walls to cut and which to save so that we could use the containers with as little additional structure as possible.

The husband worked for a demolition company and is an avid mechanic with a love for old customized American cars. Re-use and alteration became the way to build the house, much in line with the custom car culture. Salvaged from demolition sites around Stockholm, components like timber planks, metal boards, staircases in wood and steel, and parts of old kitchens were re-used and installed after slight modifications.

Each architectural detail was drawn directly from the raw material that was found. Trust and dialogue rather than standard solutions characterized the building process that included many discussions on-site between the architect, client/builder, and structural engineer. Quick hand drawings complemented the drawing set.

The original proposal and plan were never changed though. In a housing scheme, the plan drawings and the flow of the plan, the ability to always walk towards the light and to have surprising views and diagonals, is regardless if you make a container house or a wood frame house, very important.

This is a modest home for a family with three kids so each square meter had to be planned carefully. The entrance level has a den and a guest bedroom, laundry, and a master bath with a view. The upper level has a living-dining and terrace towards the view and bedrooms in the back towards the forest.

The top container has two functions, a look-out mezzanine where the kids can find solitude but still be around, and also as a light shaft that brings the midday sun into the north-facing living room. Even though the harsh site faces north the living-dining room is flooded with direct sun and the roof terrace has a great evening sun location.

The upper level is connected to the pine tree forest behind the house by a free-spanning eight-meter steel truss sky bridge. The rectilinear world of stacked containers meets the natural form of the hillside. The modular shipping container home stands on steel pillars/stilts on concrete plinths. This eliminated the problem with large amounts of rainwater that flows down the steep hillside. This is very explicit during heavy rains seen from the lower bathroom. It has one big window facing the zen-like view of the canyon rock at the backside of the house. A small openable window to the left makes it possible to hear the birds outside when taking a bath.

The subdividing mullions of each window, together with exterior add-ons that were needed to make the containers up to code (such as railings, chimneys, and water dispensers) were all designed to give the house its own logic and proportions. A composition that dissolves and goes beyond the absolute symmetry of shipping containers.

There is a point where the stacked containers, with everything that is added and modified, cease to be containers and instead becomes an assembled building fixed in a landscape. This point interests the architects and guided the designers through many design challenges with the house.

Portable Cabin - Two Containers Year-Round Living Space / Remote Workplace and Two Containers Storage Space, Poland

Floor Plans / Drawings
About wiercinski-studio

ProjectPortable Cabin
Area60 sqm
Containers4 x 40 ft
LocationPoznan, Poland
PhotographyONI Studio

Portable Сabin is a year-round living space made of two adapted shipping containers above storage space, which is also made of two shipping containers. Owners are a couple of brave people who are familiar with temporary architecture and are interested in searching for interesting and difficult to adapt spaces. The implementation of a Portable Cabin as a remote workplace turned out to be a great response to the present times. The facility is currently located at the community garden next to the Szelagowski Park in Poznan, and in the future, it is to go to the forest and ultimately stand on the water. Containers were fully prepared in the production hall, while its transport and assembly on the plot took one day, and only the last internal finishing works remained on site.

The cabin was partially placed on the roof of previously standing containers, which serve as storage space for a garden. Due to the sloping terrain and views, the solid was shifted by half its length, creating a large terrace on one side facing the nearby river, and on the other side, it came closer to the plot, lowering the height needed to enter it. The cabin consists of two cargo shipping containers, 12 m x 2.5 m and 2.9 m high.

By arranging the function inside, which includes a living room with a kitchen, place to work, bedroom, and bathroom with bathtub, it was possible to obtain a total of 54 m2 of usable space and 24 m2 of space among greenery on the terrace. The walls of the portable cabin are insulated with spray foam and finished with birch plywood, which gives a unique atmosphere inside. By using appropriate materials, it was possible to obtain 2.6 m of internal height in the light and to hide the lintel created when connecting container frames.

The characteristic facade made of thick trapezoidal sheet metal was intentionally left to show the sincerity of the raw construction material. The walls are painted a dim green color which blends the object with the surroundings. In the living area overlooking the river, large balcony windows have been installed in the places where the metal gates were located. On the side elevations, windows have been placed in the middle of the wall height to leave as many interior arrangement options as possible.

Openings and windows are squares that stylistically fit perfectly into a simple shape and, depending on their function, combine into double and triple configurations. The facility is complemented by designed external steel stairs and a characteristic arched balustrade on the terrace. The furniture shown in the photos, i.e. a bench, a table and a chair with a round backrest, are also of our design.

The great advantage of this year-round living space and remote workplace is its mobility. In this case, the shipping container home ceases to be a property tied to a specific place, but it can change its location along with the changes accompanying the life of the owners.

Barndominium Style 900 sqft Shipping Container Home with Covered Indoor/Outdoor Space Between Containers, Ohio

Location and contact info
Hocking Hills State Park Contact Info
About Creative Cabinets
About Creative Cabins

BuilderCreative Cabins
Area900 sqft
Containers2 x 40 ft
LocationHocking Hills State Park, Logan, Ohio, United States

L3nee's Lay-Up (pronounced La Nay) is a unique barndominium style shipping container home featuring a half court covered indoor/outdoor basketball hoop.

This home also features 2 shipping containers with 2 private bedrooms (Queen size) and 2 private bathrooms with showers. Full kitchen and the family room with a gas fireplace. Covered outdoor dining space, hot tub, 2 swings, and fire pit.

L3nee’s Lay-up got its name for owners daughter who played basketball since she could walk. Her number as a young player was #3. She went on to play college basketball and still plays today even in her 30’s. Basketball has been a big part of their lives. Owners love the game and wanted to share this beautiful shipping container home with others who feel the same.

Cozy 40 ft Shipping Container Home with Large Windows, Barneveld, New York

Construction process
Location and contact info

ProjectThe Scenic Orchard
Builders and ownersEmily, Lee & Gabe
Area320 sq ft
Containers1 x 40 ft
LocationBarneveld, New York, United States

This beautiful and cozy 40 ft shipping container home with large windows is located in Barneveld, New York. The overhangs for the fireplace and hot tub adds great detail to the design. Not much space to work with inside since 40 ft shipping containers are 320sqft but it has it all from a kitchen space, seating area, bathroom, and bedroom. Imagine making up to the sunrise in that bedroom with those huge windows

This shipping container originally stored lawn furniture and sat at the back of the property was as useful as it could be.

Owners didn't hire a construction company to do this shipping container transformation - fortunately they were able to do a lot of the work themselves with the help of one full time worker.

Though, they did hire out independent (extremely talented) contractors for the sheetrocking, spray foam and concrete (as owners did not have a large concrete truck at their disposal nor did they think they could've done a better job than professionals).

Description by Airbnb

This Modern Getaway was thoughtfully designed to bring you a luxurious getaway in mother nature.

Featuring large glass windows throughout the front allows you unobstructed views anytime of the day! Every window does have blinds that you can adjust to your liking as well.

The heated floors allow you to walk freely & comfortably while staying cozy, even in the winter! While, the hot tub is just a few steps away on the outdoor patio that also hosts a large fire pit for you to enjoy!

The interior is based off the simplicity and peacefulness of the surrounding property (The AKaydia Estate) tying in clean and calming colors.

20 ft Shipping Container Home with Space-Saving Furniture

Space-saving furniture
Floor plans
Construction process
About Bernardo Horta Arquiteto
About Cont.Loc

ProjectCasulo studio
ArchitectureBernardo Horta Arquiteto, Meius Arquitetura (Guilherme Jose and Giulianno Camatta) and Pedro Lodi
Area15 sq m (160 sq ft)
ContainersOne 20 ft
PhotographyJomar Braganca
LocationBelo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

Description by architects

Concept: The Casulo studio is a changeable space, included in a 20 ft shipping container, where we want to demonstrate how flexible inhabiting can be today. With this, the project allows different “faces” from the same fixed furniture. What we want is a space that is palpable and lived by the user, a space that can be touched and unfolded, not just with a simple look, but with individual curiosity. We imagine an interactive and living place. The idea is that through simple systems new layouts are established providing the use of the environment for different activities. From a living space, a barbershop or even a small residence.

Construction: With the emergence of new construction technologies, the container appears as a new alternative. Basically, its structure is composed of a 20 ft shipping container, which, without proper work, is a dark and unventilated environment. The customization of containers is relatively fast, and many companies make projects aimed at commerce, homes and offices, as it is a construction system that is easy to expand, through a modular system of units that significantly expands the structures.

01. At first, the container underwent a general customization, opening cuts in its walls to make the space more airy. At that time, thermal and acoustic insulation was also carried out using glass wool (recyclable pet), which are placed in the form of a sandwich, between the structure and wooden boards. In these spans, a passage is created for the placement of electrical tubes and hydro-sanitary pipes.
02. The other stage consisted of the internal division of the environment, creating the bathroom and possible programmatic areas. To make the use of space in a more versatile and adaptable way, a changeable piece of space-saving furniture (containing several functions) was designed. That furniture would be formed according to the user's need.

Materials and solutions: An alternating mesh of pallets was used to cover the deck. The pallet is a wooden platform used for moving materials in large quantities. In addition to being more economical than common wood, pallets can be assembled and disassembled as needed and, in the event of a change, all the material can be reused. The choice of the ferrule coating was due to the low cost of this material and the ease of installation. The ferrule plate is produced by gluing thin layers (leaves) of wood. The material has high potential for forest management, due to its rapid growth and abundance of regeneration. The PET Wool used on the walls is an ecologically correct thermal and acoustic insulator, coming from recycled material. Sustainability is its biggest advantage, since it is produced from recycled PET bottles, without the addition of resins, without the use of water or carbon emissions during the process. For the landscaping of the environment, we chose to use only native vegetation. The use of native vegetation brings numerous advantages, and it is important to highlight the suitability of these plants to our climate, their resistance to possible pest attacks and also contribute to the diversification of fauna (being food for local animals).

Lovely Little 3x20 ft Shipping Container Home, Lincoln, Nebraska

Construction process
Location and contact info

Designers, builders and ownersAmera and Josh Nix
Area480 sq ft
Containers3 x 20 ft
LocationLincoln, Nebraska, United States

Amera and Josh Nix from Lincoln, Nebraska are designers, builders and owners of this lovely little 3x20ft shipping container home right in the middle of the city. The configuration of the shipping containers makes for a stunning look and a spacious interior. Inside is bright and never lacks space anywhere. The bedroom is up the steps and right off of that is the rooftop patio space. The tiny house is unique is all of its ways.

Shipping Container Restaurant with Inner Courtyard, Brazil

Floor plans / drawings
Location and contact info
About Bernardo Horta Arquiteto

ArchitectureBernardo Horta Arquiteto, Meius Arquitetura, Zargos Arquitetos
CollaboratorsDebora Camargos, Joao Pedro Lacerda, Rodrigo Pereira
Area78 sq m (840 sq ft)
ContainersFour 40 ft
ManufacturersCosentino, A3 Marmores, Espaco 670, JP Marcenaria, Oppa, Suvinil, Tenue Origamis, Torino Moveis planejados, iluminar
PhotographyHenrique Queiroga
LocationLagoa Santa, Brazil

Description by architects

The project is based on a simple line of reasoning: open the container for the public and thus invite them to enjoy the space. The colors and combinations complement each other: woods, metals, threads, light, black and red; complementary contradictory elements receive the individual. The main element is the wood that melts the environments creating a continuous space, where the interior and exterior are mixed, adding everything in a coherent way.

The kitchen, in red, superimposes the neutrality of the external colors, attracting attention beyond the space called social and coexistence. In the presumption of a visual impact, the individual is drawn to the base where the services take place: the heart of the restaurant. Finally, the urban art in the external canteen integrates the elements of the bar into the environment, providing all the miscegenation and spatial singularity of the project.

As every shipping container has its industrial air intrinsic to its shape and characteristics, our option was the most attractive for the local public.

Our inspiration was integration, which was achieved through a large opening (front facade to the inner courtyard), bringing the outside in. When we observed that all the environments projected by us would be complementary, we saw the need for this integration.

The main environment was treated in such a way that the wood of the floor covering is also the same for the internal chairs and for the lining (providing the connection). The bar, located in front of the container, will have the same language since we reuse its cutting can to make the wrapper. At the end of it all, we wanted to bring an environment that was a bit more vivid to the space, a place that is usually left in the background or treated as a service, the kitchen. This was painted with warm and strong colors, so that it was not just a common form, but a place of experience and curiosity (the kitchen will work serving the shipping container restaurant).

Casa P406 - 1200 sq ft Shipping Container Summer House, Chile

Floor plans / drawings
Construction process
About Orfali & Ehrenfeld

ProjectCasa P406
ArchitectureOrfali & Ehrenfeld - Ignacio Orfali, Felipe Ehrenfeld
EngineeringFrancisco Ottone V
CollaboratorsJoaquín Germain, Victoria Riquelme
Area115 sq m (1200 sq ft)
ContainersFour 40 ft
ManufacturersArauco, Kitchencenter, Dap Ducasse, Ledstudio, Trimble Navigation, Servicontainer, Wasser
PhotographyGonzálo Carrasco A
LocationQuilimari, Chile

Description by architects

Located in Quilimarí, 25km from Los Vilos, a historic town in which cultural remnants dating back to the colony can be distinguished. The project consisted of the design and construction of a summer house located on the slopes of the "puntiagudo" hill, on irregular terrain and difficult to access site. These were main conditions along with the difficult logistics involved in finding labor for the construction of the project. To address it, we think of the modular shipping container structure, to be able to prefabricate the house in the workshop in order to limit the construction process on the ground. Four high cube shipping containers were used, due to their greater free height. Of these, 3 shipping containers were cut in half, joined by dismantling the side panels to form a single environment, with 70m² (750ft²) area. With them we build the lower floor, whose program is mainly intended for the public area of the shipping container home. We place a glazed façade looking for the view of the valley and the distant sea; Its predominantly south orientation left the house with little solar radiation, which is why we developed a continuous skylight adjoining the north wall, so as not to deprive the house of sunlight.

On the upper floor we install the remaining shipping container, which we use for the bedrooms. This space, when complete, extends beyond the first floor with a generous cantilever. To achieve a comfortable habitability, taking into account only 235 centimeters (7.7 feet) wide of the container, we had to remove one of its side panels to attach a V-shaped extension that added 150 centimeters (4.9 feet) to the width at its widest point. As a result of this expansion, as the skin of the container was lost, we installed an exo-structure lined with 2x2” impregnated pine in a proportion of 50%. This allows us, first, to shade and avoid overheating in the summer time, when the shipping container house is most often used, and second, to separate the second level formally and aesthetically from the lower floor – it is like a sculpture that needs a pedestal to enhance its value.

The interior coatings are common and simple: vitrified pine tongue-and-groove wood for the floor, and a white lead color was applied to the walls and ceiling. We think of the furniture in work, counter, bookcase and stairs as dual elements that help to build the interior spatiality while fulfilling their own function: they are sculptural objects that segment and limit the space in zones, but also decorate and fill by mere presence.