Shipping container architecture is the use of steel intermodal containers as an element of buildings and other structures. Shipping containers are reasonably cheap, ubiquitous, strong and stackable. They are also standard sizes that allow for sharing of designs. In some cases, shipping containers are used to build temporary structures such as exhibition sites. They are also commonly used to build permanent structures small and large. They have appeal as a sustainable building element because, purchased secondhand, they are a form of upcycling.
The use of steel intermodal containers as an architectural element.
StrengthDurabilityStackabilityModularityStandard size for design sharingEasy to transportWidely available
Metal conducts heatFixed size, lack of design flexibilityNot breathable, e.g. humidity collects on wallsContainer roofs aren't as strong as you might expect. They are very strong at endpoints used for stacking but not in the middle of the roof.
Containers may have been treated with chemicals or exposed to spills.
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