Sman Cruisers’ Classic Wooden Bikes Take to the Streets With Sustainable Style | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

With summer in full swing and temperatures soaring across the states, why not stay cool and reduce carbon emissions at the same time by taking to the streets on a wooden bicycle by Sman Cruisers? The retro-styled beach bikes, developed by Dutch master woodworker Arnolt Van Der Sman, combine 1950s California surf culture with environmentally-friendly materials to inject classic form with contemporary eco-consciousness.  Read about what makes this cruiser sustainable after the jump.

via Sman Cruisers’ Classic Wooden Bikes Take to the Streets With Sustainable Style | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.


Technicolor Tape Installations Turn Ordinary Hallways And Staircases Into ‘Dreamscapes’

Glasgow based Jim Lambie has mastered the art of tape, fashioning large-scale installations out of the sticky stuff that he manages to imbue with the power to transform the dynamics of an entire space. Lambie’s creations are heavily influenced by the architecture of the gallery space it inhabits, tracing the floor with brightly colored vinyl tape to create pulsating illusions that disorient the viewer.

Each of the installations is site-specific and labor-intensive, with most taking weeks to complete. Through the use of contrasting colors, angles and lines, Lambie’s installations emphasize the movement created within the space, transforming the quiet gallery into an energetic sensory overload, pulling you into some kind of “dreamscape.”

via Architizer Blog » Technicolor Tape Installations Turn Ordinary Hallways And Staircases Into ‘Dreamscapes’.

Cardboard containers

Organization: The Moving Crew

Project: What’s Inside?

A collective project by The Moving Crew What’s Inside? uses the motif of the international shipping container as a platform for cross-cultural and creative exchange between the Midwestern United States and Rijeka, Croatia.

We will stack 1800 cardboard boxes to form a volume of one big shipping container.

Dimensions of each box are 20’ x 8.5‘x 8’ in inches, or 50.8 x 21.59 x 20.32 in centimeters. Please see box diagram below.

Intermodal Shipping Containers are 8.5 X 20 X 8 feet:


The Moving Crew will silkscreen each box to transform it into a small sized container.

We ask you to invent the logo or company identity, which will be printed on them. The company identities can be fictional or not, but should reference shipping companies to whom those containers belong.


You may submit separate images in any or all of the 3 categories.

1) Company Identity / Logo (for this project we hope to receive submissions of logos which could communicate various statements about the shipping companies)

2) Graffiti (containers collect various graffiti while traveling across the globe. Leave your graffiti messages for the container design)

3) Surface (ie. barcodes and numbers, rust and damage, barnacles, hinges and latches, texture, etc?)

The Moving Crew will print your single color images on multiple colored backgrounds. The surfaces of these boxes are collaborative. Each box printed with your image may also contain other images. (I.e. your company identity may be printed with rust, a barcode, and graffiti from another artist.)

We will take your digital files and convert them to film. This film will then be used to create a silkscreen of your image. The Moving Crew will hold community screen printing workshops throughout the midwestern United States and Rijeka Croatia to create 1800 miniature shpping containers. These containers will be the primary object in the What’s Inside? exhibition.

Send the following to:

1) JPG, Ilustrator or Photoshop files. Since our exposure process requires a decisvely opaque black image, anything that is more nuanced will be filtered to translate a continious tone into ‘yes or no’ information. This will be done using Photoshop with one of the following filters: halftone, bitmap, diffusion dither, threshold, posterization etc. If you have questions about this please email:

2) Your Image IN BLACK ONLY composed within a 20’ X 8.5’ or 8’ X 8.5’ canvas (in centimeters: 50.8 x 21.59 or 20.32 x 21.59)

3) Image Resolution: 300 DPI

4) Images must be labeled with your name and the category you are submitting in. For instance if Sarah Jones is submitting an image of Graffiti her image file is called: S_Jones_Graffiti

5) Your Full Name, Address, Email and Phone Number so that we can get in touch with you and send you a catalog.

In submitting to this exhibition you are agreeing to have your design printed in tandem with the designs of other artists. You are agreeing to show your work at Molekula in Rijeka Croatia, and at the Faulconer Gallery, Grinnell IA USA. You will not receive your printed boxes at the end of the show, they will remain the property of The Moving Crew. If you have additional questions, please email

via TheMovingCrew :: WeAreShipping.

Floating islands can boost fish production while cleaning water, creator claims : Lifestyles

Breaking muddy night crawlers into thirds, Bruce Kania is so anxious to get two visitors to catch fish in his pond that he’s baiting their hooks.

“A little pressure here, we have to average one fish every two minutes or you screw up my average,” he said like a coach urging his team on in a critical playoff game.

During all the banter, he deftly baited hooks and unhooked perch and crappie as the anglers reeled them in, tossing the fish into a 5 gallon bucket.

“We’re like a machine here, we’re like a factory,” he cheered on. “Our job is to harvest nutrients. That kind of sounds grandiose, but that’s what we’re doing. We’re trying to harvest nutrients before they get down to the Gulf of Mexico and create a dead zone.”

Kania is the owner of Floating Island International, based northeast of Shepherd. On his property, Kania has a 6-acre pond in which he demonstrated the capability of his products.

The large plastic squares that the islands are made of — resembling huge, hollow honeycombs – provide the structure for plants to grow in by sucking sustenance out of the nutrient-saturated water. The water is nutrient rich because of runoff from agricultural and domestic fertilizers as well as from cattle manure.

In a typical pond, such nutrient loading can produce huge blooms of algae that feed on the minerals. But at Kania’s pond that’s not the case. Instead, the nutrients are gobbled up by biofilms growing on his islands and the plants interweaved into the islands. The biofilms are eaten by aquatic bugs that are then eaten by fish.

But the biofilms must be nurtured to thrive.

“The two variables we control are circulation and surface area,” Kania said.

By providing constant circulation to his pond through aeration, the biofilms flourish, keeping away the algae mats that would otherwise typically form. In the process, the water quality is improved as the biofilms chow down on phosphorous and nitrogen from fertilizer runoff. Water clarity has also gotten better, going from 14 inches to 19 feet in the pond, Kania said.

“I think this represents a new message for folks: that we can take water that’s dead and make it high quality,” Kania said. “And you don’t have to travel far to do it. You can do it wherever.”

Kania pointed to 64-acre Lake Elmo in Billings as an example of a place he’d like to show off the capabilities of the floating islands. He claims they would vastly improve the fishing at the shallow, canal-fed impoundment.

There are costs involved, though. In addition to the initial expense of the islands, there would also be the cost of powering the islands’ pumping systems for circulation. At his 6-acre pond, Kania said he spends about $110 a month to pump about 10,400 gallons of water a minute.

“One or two of them would fix Lake Elmo,” he said.

The idea to create the islands came to Kania while he was working as a muskie fishing guide in northern Wisconsin. The Chippewa Flowage, a 15,300-acre manmade impoundment, is dotted with about 200 islands and floating bogs.

The waterway has the distinction of producing the world record muskie, a 69-pound, 11-ounce fish caught in 1949.

“When you dive into the water you can see why it’s so productive,” Kania said. “There are roots everywhere.”

Those roots harbor the biofilms that feed the insects that the fish eat. Kania uses his islands to mimic what’s naturally occurring in places like the Chippewa Flowage.

Kania said he’s pushing to get some of his islands into New York City’s East River to help clean it up and further prove the viability of his system. Islands have already been installed elsewhere, including New Zealand.

He said he’s proven the islands work on a small scale at his pond. Last year he said anglers caught 2,600 fish from his impoundment. This year he hopes to top 5,000.

“I guess what’s exciting here is that water quality is essential to fish growth and fish harvest, which is fun,” he said. “So which would you rather harvest, 280 pounds of algae or 100 pounds of fish?”

via Floating islands can boost fish production while cleaning water, creator claims : Lifestyles.

Modular home comes delivered in a 10 foot box and is assembled “like an IKEA house”

via Modular home comes delivered in a 10 foot box and is assembled “like an IKEA house”.

House Arc, by Bellomo Architects, is a prefabricated off-the-grid housing solution that facilitates compact living. The project was originally designed as an environmentally sensitive and affordable method of housing that is not only functional but also attractive to the eye. Furthermore, it is designed to be easily packed and shipped to any location, where it can then be erected by the user or community. “We designed it to be a kit of parts that can be assembled quickly-like an IKEA house,” says House Arc architect Joseph Bellomo.

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The House Arc is designed to be flat-packed and shipped in a remarkably small box that measures 4 x 10 x 3 feet (1.2 x 3 x .95 meters). The lightweight base structure consists of a modular system of bent steel tubes that can easily be assembled on site. Constructing the low-impact home requires no special training and is similar to building modular furniture, with a kit of parts and an easy-to-follow, graphic installation manual. Upon assembly, the House Arc becomes a curvaceous 150 square-foot (14 square meter) home that weighs 3,000 pounds (1,360 kg). The house features large windows that allow natural light to filter through the dwelling. A shading trellis limits the amount of heat that can infiltrate inside the building and the raised structure allows air to flow underneath for cooling, whilst also maintaining the permeability of the site. The House Arc can withstand the elements, including tropical winds, and also features a roof designed to support solar energy-generation.

Optional additions to further enhance the sustainability of House Arc include the installation of solar photovoltaic panels and insulation that can be added between panels.

Whilst the House Arc would make an attractive backyard retreat, the lightweight and easy-to-construct house could also function as an emergency shelter. It is a primary focus of Bellomo Architects to develop the House Arc concept so it can be used to house people in devastated areas after a catastrophic event or to replace housing that was not built to withstand such forces. “We foresee the House Arc in locations such as Haiti and New Orleans” says Bellomo Architects.

We just hope that they will drop the US$65,000 price tag for such a noble cause!

The House Arc will be a featured prefab house at this year’s Sunset Celebration Weekend in Menlo Park, California from June 2-3.


via Modular home comes delivered in a 10 foot box and is assembled “like an IKEA house”.

Shipping container off-grid housing

Studio H:T’s Shipping Container House is, unsurprisingly, a house made from shipping containers – at least partially. But perhaps most impressive about the design is that it operates entirely off-grid.

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First, let’s clear up where the shipping containers fit in. The taller central section (which is clearly wedge-shaped in plan view) is not a container. Nor is it fashioned from parts of containers. No, this specially-constructed space houses the living and dining areas, with some storage space above.

But two containers flank this central living space on either side, and these make up the Shipping Container House’s bedrooms and home office spaces – as well as the kitchen judging by the interior photography.

If the Shipping Container House does indeed constitute an entirely off-grid abode then this is the design’s main achievement – incorporating passive (i.e. non-mechanized) design approaches such as passive cooling and green roofs, while the building’s orientation and window design has attempted to minimize solar heat gain (the house is located in Colorado USA). It also appears some form of exterior cladding has been applied to the containers themselves in an additional effort to mitigate solar heating.

Power is provided by a pellet stove (so though the house may be off-grid, it isn’t entirely self-sufficient) and on-site photovoltaic solar power.

Previously on Gizmag, and potentially of interest to the container-inclined, the Port-a-bach shipping container mobile home, APHIDoIDEA’s 65-container education center plan, and Tsai Design’s shipping container classroom.

via Studio H:T’s off-grid Shipping Container House.

Rugby World Cup venue The Cloud popular with visitors… |

It was criticised when it was unveiled, but now it seems Aucklanders have been won over by the $9.8 million Cloud on the waterfront.

In a street poll, the majority of locals said they wanted to keep the venue and suggested its future uses could include anything from a museum, to a concert venue to a bistro.

Waterfront Auckland, the Government and Auckland Council are involved in ongoing discussions about the structure’s future.

Plans for the $9.8m temporary structure were unveiled last October but critics labelled the undulating white structure as “The Slug” and heritage lobbyists argued the historic Shed 11 shouldn’t have been demolished to make way for the structure.

But Aucklanders polled last week seemed to have changed their tune.

A number of people described the temporary structure as “awesome” and everyone agreed it should remain on Auckland’s waterfront.

The venue, which has had nearly a million visitors, has hosted a showcase of Kiwi innovation, late night DJs, live music acts including Goldenhorse and Don McGlashan, and a Cordon Bleu culinary match between New Zealand and France.

Paul Leacock said: “It’s great. There’s a lot of energy and excitement there – it’s awesome.”

Jury Ropata believed it could be further utilised for events and concerts.

“I reckon it should stay just for other tourists to come and have a look that haven’t seen it yet.”

Carolyn Chrochtan said the structure had been a good use of taxpayers’ money.

Waterfront Auckland chairman Bob Harvey says he is “very keen” to see the Queens Wharf structure remain in Auckland following its popularity during the World Cup.

He says the council-controlled organisation (CCO) is working with the mayor and the Government to determine costs involved in keeping the structure.

“It’s hugely popular and it’s quite clear there would be no problem in finding bookings for it.

“And so, on the success of it we are all committed to looking at how it might stay.”

A spokesman from the mayor’s office says an announcement about The Cloud’s future wouldn’t be made “anytime soon”.

But he says the mayor is committed to maintaining Queens Wharf as a public space and says it will be used as a cruise ship terminal for the time being.

The 180-metre venue, constructed of steel frame and fabric covering, can be divided into four to host multiple events and hold up to 6000 people.

It opened to the public on September 6 – three days before the RWC kicked off.

During the tournament it has hosted VIPs, international media and thousands of rugby fans who come to watch tournament matches.

Last week, 828,889 visitors had passed through the waterfront fan zones at Queens and Captain Cook wharves during the Rugby World Cup.

via Rugby World Cup venue The Cloud popular with visitors… |

Buford, Wyo. _ population 1 _ heads to auction – Yahoo! News

BUFORD, Wyo. (AP) — What’s advertised as the smallest town in the United States is scheduled to go up for auction next month.

Buford, located between Cheyenne and Laramie in southeast Wyoming, is famous for having just one inhabitant, Don Sammons.

Sammons plans to retire from managing his businesses at Buford and move on. The auction is set for noon on April 5.

Buford traces its origins the 1860s and the construction of the Transcontinental Railroad and had as many as 2,000 residents before the railroad was rerouted.

Sammons and his family moved from Los Angeles to Buford in 1980. Family members moved away over the years, but Sammons stayed on as sole resident and “mayor” of the unincorporated community. He bought the trading post in 1992 and operated it until last year.

“It was a great life for me and for my family,” he said, adding it would be the same for anyone looking for a unique operation.

Buford sits at an elevation of 8,000 feet and is the highest town along Interstate 80 between New York and California. The area offers impressive views of the Rocky Mountains but is prone to extreme winds and frigid temperatures — even by Wyoming standards.

Foul weather shuts down I-80 between Cheyenne and Laramie at least a couple times during a typical winter. Each time that happens, Buford might as well be at the North Pole rather than next to one of the busiest cross-country thoroughfares in the U.S.

Assets up for sale will include a gas station and convenience store, a 1905 schoolhouse that has been used as an office, a cabin, a garage, 10 acres of land, a three-bedroom home, the Wyoming Tribune Eagle reported ( ).

Buford has its own ZIP code and post office boxes for people who live nearby.

It’s a business opportunity that also offers a romantic lifestyle, said Amy Bates, chief marketing officer for Oklahoma City, Okla.-based Williams and Williams, which is handling the auction. Bidding will open at $100,000, she said.

“We’re going to have a variety of people attracted to this property, based on what it would mean to them,” Bates said.

via Buford, Wyo. _ population 1 _ heads to auction – Yahoo! News.

Entire town of Buford, Wyo., for sale by sole resident | The Sideshow – Yahoo! News

If you’ve got a spare $100,000, you could potentially become the owner of a small Wyoming town that’s set to be auctioned off next month by its sole resident.

After more than 30 years of residing in the unincorporated community, town “mayor”  Don Sammons says it’s finally time to move on.

“Don, ‘The Mayor’, is retiring after 20 wonderful years in his town,” Sammons writes on the website for his business, the Buford Trading Post, a gas station and store. “This entire, income producing, town is for sale; the house, the Trading Post, the former school house, along with all the history of this very unique place.”

Buford, located between Cheyenne and Laramie, was first founded in the 1860s and was once home to an estimated 2,000 residents before the Transcontinental Railroad was rerouted.

Sammons moved to Buford with his family in 1980. In 1992, he bought the Buford Trading Post and has continued to preside as Buford’s unofficial “mayor.” Over the years, members of Sammons’ family gradually moved away until he was finally left as the only resident.

“It was a great life for me and for my family,” Sammons, 60, told the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, adding that selling it on his own wouldn’t do the town justice. “I needed to find someone who is an expert in selling unique and one-of-a-kind items.” Buford, Wyoming’s second-oldest town, was named after a Civil War general.

Along with the above-mentioned items, whoever purchases Buford will also become proprietor of his or her very own ZIP code, 82052.

And while Sammons is Buford’s sole resident, he’s hardly alone out there. Sammons says the trading post is visited by roughly 1,000 customers per day.

A local advertisement for the forthcoming auction, hosted by Oklahoma-based Williams and Williams, describes the sale as follows:

“Unique opportunity to acquire an entire town, along with the Buford Trading post, an income-producing convenience and fuel store. Included in the auction are 10+/- acres of land, five buildings including a 3 bedroom home, United States post office boxes, plow and three vehicles. There is also a Union Wireless cellular tower with lease, and parking area previously used by an overnight shipping company for nighttime trailer switches.”

“We’re going to have a variety of people attracted to this property, based on what it would mean to them,” Williams and Williams’ Chief Marketing Officer Amy Bates told the Eagle.

via Entire town of Buford, Wyo., for sale by sole resident | The Sideshow – Yahoo! News.

Container Project – South Africa

The Container Project is a not-for-profit Community Multimedia Center providing access to new technology for marginalised and under-educated people in rural communities. The Project promotes the use of the Internet and other multimedia platform as a new and innovative means of learning and creative development for career boosting activity and empowerment through the use of information communication technology and computers.

Our main strategy lies in the introduction of the use of computer related technology to grassroots communities, empowering the youths and long-term unemployed in developing and improving their ability to successfully interact with the new and emerging technologies. The “Container” is a phisically a 40ft shipping container unit, equipped with computers and other forms of communication media. It was designed to be transported across the island, setting up workshop projects, introducing the target groups to the creative and productive use of computer software and hardware, communication technology, giving access and demonstrative communication skills to those who would otherwise not have had these opportunities. (In the pilot phase the Container has been “immobilised” at Palmers Cross; in the first instance because we did not have a chassis, but, in the months after the launch, because of the communitys’ attachment to the project.)

The project recognises the fact that as the developed world increasingly turns to ICT in all aspects of everyday life – for communication, business, trade, information and pleasure – people in developing countries are being left behind. Thus the gap between rich and poor, developed and developing countries is widening. The Container sets out to address this imbalance, it’s concept is simple:

1. To build a mobile computer resource facility that is familiar in its appearance so as not to intimidate its target users. (Shipping containers are a familiar sight along the Jamaican roadways as a form of localised development infrastructure.)

2. Equip the Container with computer terminals and Internet connection.

3. Deliver a non-profit mobile access space to new technology for marginalised urban and rural communities linking them to their heritage and cultural backbone. Giving creative individuals / marginalised groups open access to computer equipment.

4. Drive the Container into the heart of the communities where people are most marginalised.

5. Work with grass roots people to demonstrate the value of ICT and DTP– showing how it can enhance people’s lives through improved communication and access to new opportunities for both business and pleasure.

6. Provide basic training in computer software and Internet use by multimedia professionals from around the world.

7. Aim to establish a permanent local Internet provider (Cyber Center)– whether this is setting up links with an existing resource that may exist nearby, or fundraising for provision where none exists.

8. Move the Container on to new communities, building connections and networks along the way.

In short, the Container is a mobile workstation existing primarily to provide simplified access to information technology about topics that are distributed over a number of different applications. Some fifteen plus computers and other equipment in the specially converted container will form the core of a roving multimedia center. The Container will work with local and international collaborators and artists to produce a series of multimedia workshops. At the most basic level the Container will function as a link to new media resources; at a more advanced level it will provide considerable added value and training to the existing workforce and a resource for information and communication source information. The project will also be collecting donated computers to set up a series of multimedia workshops in communities that the Container will be visiting across Jamaica extending the prospect of free access and continuous connectivity with the project and facilitation groups around the world. The main objectives of these workshops are to facilitate the idea of alternative networking between the Caribbean islands and the rest of the world. Creating a Do-It-Yourself medium through the use of computers and new technology.

1. Environment
The facility is situated in a mobile refitted 40ft shipping container with open windows and doors. The container is located on an asphalted open lot in close proximity to the well-known Parker Pond, a landmark in Palmers Cross.

There are 16 workstations running three operating systems -Windows, Mac OS and Linux with CD R/RW and DVD players, Printers and other peripheral.
All the equipment is available for community use. The Project provides video taping, audio recording, graphics design and other basic software manipulation.
The training methodology encourages users to pursue their own interests and ambitions, calling upon the help of colleagues and professionals as and when required. The Container offers the opportunity to learn and produce using office applications, multimedia and music, and also involves participants in day to day hardware and operating system maintenance.

2.1 Connectivity
A land line was recently installed by CW Jamaica. Application had been made in 2000. It is hoped that the Container will receive sponsorship for an ADSL line in March 2004 which will enable it to provide Internet services.The Container makes use of Open source technology and operates in a Linux based network server.

2.2 Power
The facility is supplied by the national grid (JPS co), and as such is subject to the vagaries of periodic power cuts due to load shedding and various other reasons. The risk posed by varying voltages to the Unit is countered through the installation of a 220V system using UK power points which are fused .

2.3 Adequacy of the physical facilities
The facility is adequate to fulfil its current remits and forms an integral part of the ownership policy under which the community feel that the facility is very much a part of them.

3 The Users
There are currently 210 registered users of the facility, who range in age from 6 up to 65 years. There is no upper age limit barrier. The user group are broken down as follows:
20% Ages 6-12 years
70% Ages 13-30 years
10% Ages 31-65 years
Several users travel from up to 20 miles away to use the facility.
3.1 Level of education
62% users have education up to Grade 6- 9
12% have secondary education
15 % have primary level
<3% have tertiary education.

3.2 Occupation
The break down of occupation among users of the Container is as follows:
Unemployed 43%
Students 36%
Self-employed 15%
Employed 3%
Professional 3%
The employed group includes those which work in bars and stores in Palmers Cross, May Pen and environs. Of those self employed, some are mechanics, chicken farmers or involved in the building construction trade. Of the unemployed are young men and women, of varying educational standard with nothing to do.

3.3 Percentage awareness and receptiveness to information and communication technology
Almost 100% of visitors to the Project leave with an appreciation of ICT and its potential value to them and their community.

3.4 Percentage experience in, or exposure to use of the information and communication technology
Approximately 3% of members were already exposed to information technology and have used it in one form or another prior to coming to the Container.

3.5 Daily percentage level of usage of ICT facilities by community members
Usage varies with the highest number of persons coming in the afternoons and on Saturdays. The Container is open 10 hrs per day and can accommodate 50 persons per day. On average about 75% of capacity usage occurs each day. Palmers Cross is located in central Jamaica/south east Clarendon an area of high unemployment and under-educated people. Though rural the community is not a farming one and consists of mostly domestic inhabitants seeking low-level employment and is statistically a high crime area. Although training for employment socialisation and self-actualisation have become important deliverables the Container is faithful to its original mission which is to be a user-friendly community access point for trans-border communication and information between the people of Palmers Cross of all ages and relatives friends and opportunities in far-flung and distant locations cross the globe. The container Project teaches people of all ages to use the computer to industry standards and also as a creative tool and for personal communication needs. We offer traditional ICT Course in Office applications Multimedia Production.

via Container Document.

Container Conversion overview

melamine and pressed wool insulated interior

In the last post we went through some of the things you should consider when planning your shipping container conversion.Each of the points raised probably deserve a more in depth look and so today I am going to deal with probably the topic that I get asked about most – insulation.

There is, of course, various reasons why you might want to line and insulate your shipping container. Obviously if you are planning on converting it into a usable office, clubhouse or any type of building you want to be able to control just how warm/cool it is. And lets face it. There is no point in just putting heaters or air conditioning in to regulate the temperature in what would be without lining a metal box. The cost would be the same as trying to govern the temperature outside. Insulation is vital to keep those energy costs down and to stabilise the overall temperature inside your shipping containers. It also helps stop condensation.


A container lined and insulated using melamine faced board and rockwool

There are various options you can consider. The most popular way of insulating your container is to batten out the sides and the ceiling, insulate with rockwool and finish with a faced board of your choice. There are various options here from melamine to plasterboard finishes. There are specialist options which have higher fire ratings or sound proofing. Much depends on what your shipping container conversion is going to be used for.

All this happens on the inside of the containers. But let us not forget that there are other options to consider such as cladding or using SPF on the outside of the container. SPF or Spray Foam Insulation can be sprayed directly onto the walls etc to provide a barrier before putting on a decorative cladding. You would have put on some battening or furring strips to contain it as it expands to fit every nook and cranny. It is not commonly used in the UK on shipping containers at the moment but certainly is worth considering. If anyone is interested in learning more of the practical details of applying this stuff, let me know and I will do a post on it.

Green Roof on Shipping Container

Another popular external insulation is a green roof. Effectively a tray on top of the container, filled with soil and planted up.

There are so many different container conversions that have been built over the years that it is easy to get sidetracked and forget to look at the basics. As with any conversion, good planning is essential and if you are able to work out exactly what you want and draw some upsort of plan that is good place to start. Here are some important points to bear in mind when drawing up your plan:-

No matter how large your conversion is eventually going to be it is important to remember the basic sizes of shipping container – either the 20ft or 40ft lengths are the most commonly used.

Remember that sides can be cut out of containers so that they can be combined on site to give more width – though always in 8ft increases.

Shipping Containers can also be stacked on top of one another to give additional height though it is important to line up the iso blocks on the cornersfor strength. 20ft containers should therefore sit only on 20ft containers – don’t think you can add a 40ft on one level with two 20fts on top for example and still keep integral strength.

If you are considering having heating or air conditioning do think about having the container lined and insulated

Windows can be double glazed and you should always consider having metal shutters for security. The average sized window is 3ftx3ft.

Whilst second hand shipping containers provide a greener solution if you are considering a multi-container conversion it could be as well to go for new/once used containers so that the floor levels can match up as the containers will all have been built to the same specification.

Single container conversions can be divided into sections. A lot of office conversions for example consist of 50% office and 50% storage space.

Additional doors can be put into the container. The most common is a personnel door but double container doors and even complete side access doors are possibilities.

Electricity can be supplied not only by the traditional method of connecting to the National Grid but by alternative sources such as solar panels, wind turbines etc.

Plumbing can be added from simple sinks to disabled lavatories but remember to consider where the pipes need to go in relation to your site.

You do not need to provide any more than a basic sketch or layout of your conversion – although wonderful to receive a CAD drawing a basic plan is often sufficient to get things started. Inevitably shipping container conversionsevolve as the planning process is discussed and developed. A reputable company should always give you a quotation and will be quite happy to break down the different costings so that you can choose and develop your conversions as you progress.

Tags: Container Conversions, second hand shipping containers, Shipping Container Conversions, shipping container homes, Shipping Containers

Posted in Bespoke Conversions,- Container Blog,- Container Conversions | No Comments »

Shipping Container Conversions – How Green Are they?

21/10/10 10:11 am by CS Shipping Containers

Using second hand shipping containers to turn into homes, site offices, community projects, classrooms (to name but a few) is a common sense solution that can solve all sorts of problems. Not only do these shippingcontainer conversions mean that you are recycling what is essentially anindustrial product but they also save you money.

If you look at a shipping container as being essentially a building block it is easy to imagine combining them in all sorts of different combinations and then lining and insulating them, putting in windows and doors and power to convert them to whatever you require.

You can combine containers to form larger buildings

Power can be by linking the second hand shipping container to the grid, but also more and more, people are looking to having solar panels on the roof or linking up to a wind turbine that they put near by. We have also started quoting more and more for people to have a”green roof” put on the container which provides extra insulation and helps to blend the container in with the environment.

Alternative energy sources can be used to provide power to shipping container conversions

By using an existing surplus industrial product you are not causing any more metal to be mined or trees to be cut down. A large amount of the conversion work required to provide insulation etc can also be made using recycled materials. The versatility of the shipping container means that it is suitable for many different purposes and best of all, not only does it save you money it is easy and economic in all senses to get onto site and construction times are often up to 2/3rds less.

Shipping Container Conversions are thereforean eco-friendly and economic solution.

via Container Blog | CS Shipping Containers.

via Container Blog | CS Shipping Containers.

Tempohousing from Amsterdam

modular design. Same company as container city. Would be interesting to get their thoughts on one vs other

The housing system of Tempohousing is based on the principle that the units are similar to shipping containers, so the transport options are universal. Universal means: they could be produced anywhere and they can be re-used or re-sold to any other place in the world. The container sizes are defined in ISO standard: 8 ft (2,4 m) wide, 40 ft long (12 m) and 8’6” high (2,6 m). There are a few variations in size: higher units: 9’6” (“high cube”) and longer units 45 ft (13,5m) and for some – not European – markets 53 ft (16 m).

The designs of Tempohousing are all based on 8 or 16 ft wide (2,4 or 4,8 m) and 40 or 45 ft (12 or 13,5) long. These are the most efficient designs. For some customers we have developed designs with 3 or 4 units side by side, but this is an exception. The beauty of the Tempohousing system is its simplicity. Of course we can cut up the steel shells and build the castle of your dreams but we prefer to stick to the standard models.

Just the supply of prefabricated modular homes in your nearest port does not constitute a complete building that can be occupied by its users. The following activities are for example necessary on the future construction site to complete a housing project: architectural drawings and detailing, consultants to verify the local building code, building permits, connections to the local sewage and potable water and power and telephone systems, a foundation, a roof including rainwater provisions, staircases and sometimes elevators, walkways and balconies if included in the design, stacking the units with cranes, connecting all services between the units (vertical) and last but not least some landscaping (parking, access, lights, mailboxes, door access system, routing system, green areas). We will be happy to assist in all these activities. Outside the Netherlands, we team up with partners with a local presence to implement all the activities above. See building a modular project and modular designs for more examples.

nice views of Dominical

finally - a circle one

office park