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Container housing in ACT?

By boo-radley - 26 April 2011 10

I’m interested in building a shipping container house in Canberra.

I know it’s been done for the ANU student housing, but are there any examples of private residential shipping container houses in the ACT?

What’s Your opinion?


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10 Responses to
Container housing in ACT?
trix 8:43 pm 28 Apr 11

For those wondering why you’d bother, sure you need to get the inside fitted out and get the plumbing and electrics sorted.

But you don’t need an underfloor, you don’t need a roof, you don’t need framing and you don’t need external walls. That adds up to an appreciable proportion of a built house. And these things are STRONG and weathertight. Just need to pay attention to the right kind of insulation and air circulation so as not to waste energy on heating/cooling.

Yes, you ARE recycling something that’s already been used (in theory) and you’re not wasting additional new resources for the external fabric and framing components. I don’t see why this is a bad thing.

And there are some funky designs out there to put them together. Much more interesting than pretty much all Canberra “architecture” after 1926.

georgesgenitals 8:17 am 27 Apr 11

I’d be more inclined to go for pre-fab pods, which are actually built with human habitation in mind.

Gerry-Built 10:11 pm 26 Apr 11

There is a house on the main street of Macgregor West that was built using several containers (between the 2nd and 3rd roundabouts, on the left side – from main road) – I defy anyone to pick it. It isn’t so much containers turned into a house, but actually incorporated into the structure (ie INSTEAD of timber/steel frame. The websites cross provided are not houses like the MacWest one…Cutting a few holes into the containers removes little of their structural integrity – they’d certainly be stronger than either traditional timber frame or steel frame. However, I can’t see a few (even retired containers) being cheaper than timber or steel.

Having said that, the Flynn’s container house from Tron: Legacy was cool (Quik House?)…

Lazy I 9:12 pm 26 Apr 11

thatsnotme said :

See, here’s the thing with building a house from shipping container/s. It’s a metal box, designed to hold stuff. So it doesn’t have plumbing. It doesn’t have cavities to fit insulation. It doesn’t have anywhere to run electrics. There are no windows – and cutting a hole in it will affect its load bearing capabilities.

I really don’t get why anyone would want to do this? You will need to get in tradesmen to modify the containers, so they’re remotely habitible, and those tradies will be working in an environment they’re unlikely to be used to. The link to Sea Box that p996911turbo provided seems to reinforce the view that shipping containers are good for temporary, relocatable housing…but kinda crap for a house you’re going to live in permanently.

Then, there’s the fact that if you’re going to build a home, it needs to meet building regulations and local planning laws. I doubt many people would be happy to live next door to a home made of shipping containers, unless it was modified so extensively that it was impossible to see they existed in the home.

I just can’t see what benefit you’d get from doing this? Sure, the containers themselves may be cheap, but to convert them into something you can live in will cost big bucks.

+1

I think the people doing this feel they are saving the planet by re-using these containers.. when the containers can just as easily be melted down and recycled.

Having looked at containers for storage in the past, my experience was they were usually in pretty average shape if they had made their way to a reseller to be sold off.

If you are building a permanent structure, ICF’s (insulated concrete forms) seem to be all the rage for rapid / cost effective construction:

http://www.buildblock.com/insulated_concrete_forms.asp (random site I plucked out, no specific relevance)

Have seen a couple of extensions in Canberra using them, might be worth looking in to.

cross 7:48 pm 26 Apr 11
thatsnotme 6:55 pm 26 Apr 11

See, here’s the thing with building a house from shipping container/s. It’s a metal box, designed to hold stuff. So it doesn’t have plumbing. It doesn’t have cavities to fit insulation. It doesn’t have anywhere to run electrics. There are no windows – and cutting a hole in it will affect its load bearing capabilities.

I really don’t get why anyone would want to do this? You will need to get in tradesmen to modify the containers, so they’re remotely habitible, and those tradies will be working in an environment they’re unlikely to be used to. The link to Sea Box that p996911turbo provided seems to reinforce the view that shipping containers are good for temporary, relocatable housing…but kinda crap for a house you’re going to live in permanently.

Then, there’s the fact that if you’re going to build a home, it needs to meet building regulations and local planning laws. I doubt many people would be happy to live next door to a home made of shipping containers, unless it was modified so extensively that it was impossible to see they existed in the home.

I just can’t see what benefit you’d get from doing this? Sure, the containers themselves may be cheap, but to convert them into something you can live in will cost big bucks.

GardeningGirl 5:42 pm 26 Apr 11

Bemused said :

Crace

+1 🙂

GardeningGirl 5:41 pm 26 Apr 11

Just clean it out well first (after what happened earlier this month, any more news on that I wonder?)

Bemused 4:32 pm 26 Apr 11

Crace

p996911turbo 1:51 pm 26 Apr 11

Give Sea Box International a call. They’re based in Fyshwick (doesn’t get more local than that!) and specialise in modified shipping containers. They’ve even got a few house designs already worked up or can easily work with you to design whatever you want.

Phone number is 02 6162 2826
http://seaboxintl.com.au/

There are a few other container people like Royal Wolf but only Sea Box can really deliver you a fully-prepared house.

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