Basic Shipping Container Information

Click the picture above to get a link to a website with standard 40' and 20' shipping container dimensions.

I found a great source for free architectural CAD plans for a standard 40' shipping container that I plan to use and modify for my project. This will cut out hours of time trying to draw these CAD plans, and gives me a better idea of the area I have to work with. I also started working in Sketchup with premade 40' and 20' shipping container models, configuring them for some possible market layouts. I'm debating whether or not to make my market individual shops attached to each other, or make it one large market, more like a typical supermarket. Either way, it will be a different experience, but I think making the individual shops hearkens back to market streets, and this is more of the feeling I was going for. Sort of a modern interpretation of an old idea. The only example of this that I've been able to find that is even remotely close is the Dordoy Bazaar, a public market place in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Most of the shops are shipping containers stacked two high, with the lower container as the actual retail space and the upper container as additional storage. This is an idea I am incorporating into my design, only reversing the arrangement and working with shipping containers stacked four high.

Here's a screen shot of my current Sketchup progress. I'm going to post some inspirational images of looks I want to achieve in each of my market spaces. Should I combine them as a giant market or keep them as individual markets next to each other?


Shipping Container Homes by Container City

Great video covering one of my precedents, Container City in UK

Background Information

Ecommodate as a component will reuse 20' and 40' insulated ISO shipping containers. These will be repurposed to create approximately 24 residential units as well as a market street facility that will include a deli, bakery, dairy store, fresh produce market, bike shop and general store with pharmacy. When these components come together to create an urban village, they will be placed in the historical Mid-City Perkins Road Overpass area in the heart of Baton Rouge, LA along the railroad track that runs underneath this overpass. The proposed market street will be made of stacked shipping containers and will also serve as a sound barrier to the adjacent residential units. It will be a non-traditional take on popular mixed-use environments that combine residential and retail buildings.

There have been several concerns with this type of environment and whether or not its a feasible location. Certainly having homes this close to a railroad gives rise to sound and safety concerns. The reasoning behind this selection is the practicality of it. Since shipping containers are carried by train, it makes drop-off quick and simple. It also lends itself to the style of an urban village, and the pictures of the site below will show you this. This is not intended to be a traditional neighborhood setting, but a place that appeals to the under-30 crowd.

For a powerpoint book explaining the whole project, click
here. I welcome any questions you may have, and will explain in further detail in future posts.

Beginning Thoughts: How to be "ecommodating" in this Day and Age

What does accommodating mean? What does eco mean? And when the two combine, what does ecommodating mean?

To accommodate someone means to provide food and shelter to someone in need, and to help someone adapt to a new situation. Eco relates to environmentally-friendly practices and incorporating them into daily life. So how to ecommodate? Provide environmentally-friendly food and shelter to people in need as they adapt to new situations in life, such as a changing economy and a changing world environment.

As a designer, we are faced with the challenges of meeting a client's needs in the most effecient and practical way possible, while incorporating the pleasantries of style and edge into the mix. I knew when it was time to choose a senior project, I wanted it to appeal to the masses, not a select few who are most commonly exposed to a well-designed environment. Right now as a college student in a hurting economy, its even tougher to find affordable housing solutions that are also "nice"- just because we don't have the budget to live in good quality housing doesn't mean we should live in sub-par apartments or rentals that have been neglected throughout the years.

This sparked the idea for "ecommodate: an urban village". By using reclaimed shipping containers, I will redesign and configure them as an urban mixed-use environment, with a market strip of sorts adjacent to approximately 24 residential units. This "urban village" will cater to young professionals, young couples and college students who seek to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle in an off-grid environment. Still placed within the Mid-City area of Baton Rouge, I want to explore alternative energy sources and non-traditional neighborhood configurations, seeking to create the ultimate "green" environment for the under-30 crowd. Above all, affordablility and sustainablility will govern all decisions I make in this project.

More to come... check back often!