Shipping containers are very versatile and can be used for countless projects. These steel boxes are durable, weather resistant, mold and pest resistant, intact they are theft resistant, and they come in several lengths to accommodate different cargo which lends itself quite nicely when recycling these steel building blocks.
Sure, shipping container houses are all the rage lately, and why not? The designs that have surfaced take home architecture to new heights in function and elegance. From the simple weekend getaway cottage next to the lazy river in the woods, to the multi-family ultra-modern high-rise complex in a metropolis, these boxes are adaptable to nearly any and every climate and setting. From urban to suburban and rural homes, the innovative plans available for shipping container homes are astounding in both function and form, Frank Lloyd Wright would be proud. But what other uses are there for a surplus shipping/cargo container?
Is it possible for the government to use shipping containers? Everyone is looking for ways to save money, and the government should be no different. One possible idea is using surplus shipping boxes for military use. The standardization of the boxes is perfect for many applications and container conversion kits such as:
- Portable toilets for training sites or disaster sites.
- Portable showers for large groups at trainer or disaster sites.
- Portable command posts and temporary offices during emergencies or natural disasters.
- Portable or temporary kitchens for training, terror, or disaster sites.
- Underground and portable emergency shelters.
These are just a few possibilities for government uses of these resources. The private sector could also use them for more projects, as housing isn't the only way to recycle a Corten Steel cargo container. The applications for volunteer projects alone are too numerous to count. Here are some possibilities for personal or business uses of shipping containers:
- A potting shed
- With a few modifications, a greenhouse for multi-season crops
- Personal emergency shelter and emergency supply storage.
- Bulk grain storage
- Temporary office buildings
- Building project bathroom facilities
- Portable On-site storage for machinery and tools
- A small diner
- A coffee shop
- A store front
- Warehouse for small business inventory
- Artist's studio
- Builders workshop
- Community Food pantry
- Barn for livestock
- Homeless shelter
- Homeless soup kitchen
- Homeless emergency medical station
As you can see cargo containers have plenty of potential.
Several containers might make a nice sized Community Center or after school haven for young people
The list is as endless as the imaginations of the people prepared to reuse these oversized building blocks. With a little motivation, creativity, and inspiration money, time, and resources could be saved and businesses and communities grown.