Container Garages – The New Homes of Harleys

For many companies, such as Apple, HP and Mattel, their first offices were garages. Today the new low-cost solution for office facilities is using shipping containers. Actually shipping containers narrow the gap between offices and garages even closer as people are really starting to use containers as garages.

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Shipping container construction in general is a trend for sustainable and environmentally friendly architecture. If you consider the many advantages that shipping containers posses, it is not impossible to imagine why so many people wish to build their homes, summer houses or swimming pools using shipping containers.

Shipping containers are in many ways an ideal building material. They are designed to resist harsh environments and therefore they can offer shelter even for natural disasters. They are also designed to be modular what makes it easy to use additional construction material to complete the buildings.

Shipping container construction is said to have lower labor costs compared to traditional construction. This can be explained by their simple steel structure that only requires welding and cutting procedures to be modified. Building a garage for your Harley-Davidson, BMW or Mercedes could not be more pleasant!

As prefabricated and container architecture are gaining global recognition and going mainstream, Shanghai Metal Corporation is proud to be positioned as a reliable partner and a provider of construction material. Our English speaking staff is highly-skilled and is more than happy to assist in any construction related questions. Just send us an inquiry or visit our webpage. Please also remember to follow us on our social media platforms.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Wikipedia, HD History & News, Home in a Box, Totaho.com, Youtube, Nealev in Blogspot

Coca Cola Saves Lives with Shipping Containers!

One of the world’s most valuable brands Coca-Cola is utilizing shipping containers in its corporate social responsibility program in developing countries within the bottom-of-the-pyramid (BoP) category. Together with Deka R&D and other major investors including UPS and IBM, the beverage company is installing container kiosks that will provide drinkable water for three billion people in the world that suffer from the lack of it.

These Ekocenters are to provide purified water for communities that have a limited access to safe drinking water. The modularly designed kiosk is made out of a 20 ft shipping container. The container is empowered with Slingshot technology that is responsible for the purification of water.

 

The kiosk is also meant to generate entrepreneurship in developing countries, especially among women. Along with these kiosks Coca-Cola has also launched their 5by20 program that aims to generate 5 million women entrepreneurs by the year 2020.

As discussed in our previous article about container shops, setting a container kiosk is a considerable business also in developed countries. Coca-Cola has redeveloped the concept and is now using the Ekocenters for offering locally tailored mix of products, services and resources that also include sustainable energy, wireless communications, refrigerated vaccination storage, health education, and other functionality to jump-start entrepreneurship opportunities and community development.

This CSR project begun in 2013 as Coca-Cola set up its first Ekocenter in South Africa. The company aims to install 1,500 to 2,000 Ekocenters by 2015 in Africa, Asia and the Latin and North America.

As shipping containers gain more ways of use, we in Shanghai Metal Corporation are also becoming happier in offering our international customers high-quality standardized shipping containers. For details about our large variety of products, please visit our website or just send us an inquiry and our English speaking staff will contact you. Meanwhile please remember to follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Coca-Cola Company, Coca-Cola Company Press Release, Food and Beverage News,  Designboom, 3BL Media, Expok News

Studying in shipping containers

Nowadays shipping containers are becoming more and more popular. Container restaurants, shipping container bars, shipping container clinics or shipping container dream houses. Basically, a shipping container is made out of steel and it is a type of storage box used to load heavy equipment, dry goods for shipping purposes. But is it possible to study in a shipping container as well?

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A container’s classroom

In rolling hills of Durbanville wine alley, on the outskirts of Cape Town in South Africa, the region known for its poverty, finally found sponsors, three South African companies, Woolworths, Safmarine and AfriSam and a shipping recycled container was converted into a independent classroom. Kids at age 5-6 could start studying.

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A concept diagram

 

It started as an annual competition called “Making the difference through design”. The competitors tried to find a way how a recycled container can be adapted to help under-resourced schools.

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Colorful windows

This container serves as a classroom in the morning and as a library in the afternoon. The container is sheltered from direct sunlight by a big roof while the gap reduces heat gain. This horizontal solar shade is the most radical addition to the container. There are colorful windows located on each side of the container to achieve a cross ventilation. Stepped seating offers children to have their lunch there and socialize. It is also an amphitheater for school assemblies.

A large area around the classroom was transformed into a vegetable garden where children can grow plants and have fresh vegetables as a part of school’s feeding program.

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As we see containers are not only economical but also very practical. Shanghai Metal Corporation is the leading manufacturer and supplier of shipping containers so please feel free to visit our website or send us inquiry. You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LindkedIn. if you have smart phone or tablet, download our brand new application by scanning QR code. Our English speaking staff will be more than glad to help you and answer your questions.

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Silvia M.//SMC Editor

Credit and pictures: wisegeek.com, wikipedia.com, archdaily.com, gizmag.com, google images, pinterest

Read more articles by this author here.

You can also read more articles about containers here.

 

 

 

Shipping Containers – The World’s Most Sustainable Restaurants

Shipping containers are a perfect solution for setting up a pop-up restaurant. As we already covered in our blog about container stores, container restaurants can be installed almost everywhere and they are very likely to gather a lot of crowd. Some very well know companies have already set up a mobile restaurant.

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In 2010, the sandwich company Subway had a shipping container restaurant on top of the five story Freedom Tower in New York. Subway established the restaurant for the construction workers who would otherwise have needed 45 minutes to get down from the construction. The containers had the Subway logo on a yellow background and the flag of the USA that represented the recovering from 9/11 and the resurrection of the American Dream. (source)

Shipping containers are also a form of sustainable building and offer an eco-friendly and a low-cost solution for starting restaurants.  One of the world’s best coffee shops, Starbucks, has also used shipping containers and build such an eco-friendly drive-thru cafe in Seattle. Alongside with shipping containers, the architecture also enables the collecting of rainwater and thereby lowering water consumption. (source)

In 2011, the people of London, Moscow, New York, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Delhi, Dubai and Sydney had a chance to enjoy traditional Singaporean food that was offered form a shipping container restaurant. Thanks for shipping container’s mobility the Singapore Takeout was able to serve people in these cities within 12 months. (source)

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As a new business idea, shipping container restaurants are an ideal low-cost choice. During these hard times in the economy, people who have always wanted start an own restaurant, but feel the lack of enough capital seem to have found a solution.

Shanghai Metal Corporation has a wide variety of containers including 20 ft, 40 ft, reefer containers and open top containers to name but a few. For more details, please visit our website or send us an inquiry from here. Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Inthrald, Weburbanist, Urban Times, Inhabitat, Inhabitat, Westphoria

Shipping Container Hospitals – The Future of Saving Lives

Shipping containers can be transformed into mobile hospitals just like they can be transformed into offices, homes, hotels, theaters, nightclubs, shelters, stores or swimming pools. Because of their modularity and availability, shipping container hospitals can become true life savers in the future.

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Container hospitals have been already set up all over the world. For instance, container clinics were needed when a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit Haiti in 2010 and a large part of the Grace Children’s hospital in the capital Port-au-Prince was demolished. Help was offered by a Massachusetts based company Containers2Clinic that send their 8 X 20 feet container to the  island to compensate the great infrastructural loss of the local hospital. (source)

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The first shipping container clinics were invented by Michael Wawrzewski who designed the concept of Clinics in a Can in 2005. Wawrzewski was also nominated as the AAPA‘s 2005 Physician Assistant of the year for his work in developing quality, cost-effective and accessible health-care. His first clinic was assembled in Kansas and shipped to Haiti on July 2005. (source)

An example of combining health care and great design is shown by an Indonesian firm DPavilion Architects has utilized the country’s rich resource base of shipping containers and built The Contertainer, a shipping container health clinic and a library in the island of Jawa. The shipping container complex is meant to provide better quality of life for those who have little money.

Shipping containers are built according to international ISO standards and designed to be stacked and piled up in a container ship. They have also made from durable steel in order enhance their use time and to be able to handle rough weather. As the example of The Contertainer shows, even the exterior design of the mobile clinics is not limited the original appearance of containers.

Container hospitals are the future of health care. For people in areas of low income and weak availability of health care services, setting up a pop-up clinic can be a life saver. Even in urban areas or peripheries patients do not necessarily have to be transported long distances in an ambulance because these pop-up hospitals can be placed almost anywhere. For nonprofits such as Unicef or Red Cross this solution is a must. Investing in setting up a container clinic to underdeveloped areas is a great way for businesses to show their corporate social responsibility.

Shipping containers can be purchased from Shanghai Metal Corporation. We have a large variety of shipping containers and we are also specialized shipping container prefabricated construction projects. For any details please visit our website. Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Marine Insight, Inhabitat, Popular Mechanics, Hospitals of Hope, Inhabitat, Get Simple Box, Container Living,  Clinic in a Can

Shakespeare Reborn in Container Theaters

We cannot all be masters, nor all masters cannot be truly follow’d.                   –Quotation from Shakespeare’s Othello

The modularity of shipping containers enables creative architects to design beautiful container homes and hotels. Open top containers can be turned into swimming pools. Open side containers can become excellent theaters.

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In 2013 a local architecture studio O+A designed the architectural setting of the 20th Over het IJ Festival and transformed Amsterdam’s shipyard into a huge restaurant area with theatrical stages. The building of the “container city” took four days, and another two days to take down, lasting only two weeks in between.

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Shipping containers theaters have also been used in Miami. In 2012, the actors of Microteatro por Dinero  performed in 15 minute short dramas for 15 people six times a night in a shipping container. The concept of “por dinero performance” (in English for money) has its roots in Madrid where local actors turned an old bordello into a commercial mini theater and spread the word in social media.

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Besides drama, shipping containers have also been used as movie theaters. Container mini theaters showed short films in New York in 2011. The event was a part of USA Network’s Character Project and it also was supported by the director of the Alien Saga, Ridley Scott. Audience was placed in 18-seat air conditioned screening pods to watch the shorts. The tour also took place in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago.

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It is yet unclear when does this “Broadway in a box” concept spread globally and go mainstream. Still, because of these events, mobile mini theaters will gain popularity in cinema and drama industries.

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Whenever there is a need for shipping containers, one should always contact Shanghai Metal Corporation. Our wide collection of shipping containers can help companies to pack great entertainment in a box. For more information about our shipping containers, please visit our website (http://www.smccontainer.com). Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. Try also our new mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: WLRN, N-punto, Broadway World, Gizmag, Wired, Miami New Times, Inhabitat, Oplusa.nl

Better Education Obtained in Container Schools

Today shipping containers are used to build apartments, hotels, stores and saunas to name but a few. But why does it make sense to build schools out of containers?

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The first reason is that especially old wooden school buildings are likely to have mold issues that may cause severe health risks. For example an article of a Finnish science magazine Tiede states that every second school in Finland has mold issues (source). Students are therefore either forced to stay in their mold school or move to another school. Container schools could be installed in relatively short time and with relatively low costs.

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The second reason can be studied from Samsung. In 2012, the South Korean electronics chaebol established a shipping container school in the South African village of Phomolong as a part of its corporate-social responsibility program. The school offers its 21 students premium education facilities with solar powered electricity system and notebooks, an Internet connection and Samsung Galaxy tablets. (source)

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In Orange County California, creative architects had an over three months projects of expanding the Waldorf School in Costa Mesa by using shipping containers. It took 99 days to build four buildings out of 32 shipping containers. The eco-friendly construction project cost two million US dollars which was estimated of being 10-20 percent cheaper than an “old-school” building project. Also it would have most likely taken more time than 99 days to finish by using other material than shipping containers.

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There are many types of internationally standardized shipping containers. Some have an open top and some can be opened from the sides. Thereby it gives designers limitless opportunities to develop mobile education facilities. In order to solve mold related problems or take education to less developed areas, governments, nonprofit organizations and companies’ CSR managers should look for containerized education solutions.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation is a proud provider of shipping containers. Our wide variety of container products can be seen in our website http://www.smccontainer.com. We hope that you also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. You can also try our new mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Tiede magazine, Cnet, The Volt Report, Arch Daily, Wintech Modular Buildings, Lion Containers, Design Boom

Container Greenhouses – The Urban Organic Heaven

What if you wanted to eat locally produced and reasonably priced fresh organic fruits and vegetables during cold winter? Now it is possible, thanks to shipping containers.

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Companies such as Freight Farms and PodPonics have introduced a new business model that converts second hand shipping containers into high-quality greenhouses that can be relocated almost everywhere. Every shipping container is manufactured according to ISO standards and they are also designed to be stacked into multiple layers. This enables the establishment of even bigger greenhouse complexes.

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One major advantage of container farms is that now farms can be located closer to the places where the food will be eaten. Thereby, say, restaurants can minimize their shipping costs and still offer their customers fresh and high quality food. Also the technology associated with the business ensures a safe plantation of fruits, herbs and vegetables.

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Damien Chivialle‘s model of urban farm units (UFU) has a system that uses live fishes and to to fertilize and recycle the farms water. Every container has a fish tank whose water flows in a closed circuit. The fish feces are broke into pieces that are utilized as fertilizers. The system also produces some methane for the farms secondary energy source. (source)

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Also PodPonics’ solution is said to use 90 % less water because the water is recycled. The roots grow in water, not in soil. This solution minimizes the use of fertilizers and enables the adding of nutrients only as needed (source). PodPonics’ and Freight Farms control systems can both be operated with a smart phone.

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The use of shipping containers as green houses seems to enhance the nutritional values of vegetables, herbs and fruits. It also enables companies to produce them closer to the people who end up eating them. Because of a really low Co2 footprint and lack of pesticides, urban farms create ultimate food safety. Now this food safety can also be enjoyed by average consumers because the cost of maintenance of urban farms seem to be feasible. For example PodPonics’ containers cost US 1800 to 2800 depending on their condition (source).

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In order to establish an urban farm, shipping containers need to be purchased. Shanghai Metal Corporation is a reliable provider of internationally standardized shipping containers. More information can be found on our website (http://www.smccontainer.com). Please also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. You can also download our mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Singularityhub, Designboom, Forbes, Overgrow the System, Pando Daily, Motionpictures blog

Shipping Container Bunkers – The Cure for Natural Disasters and Terrorism?

Due to their widely applicable physical features, shipping containers have become a good alternative for affordable housing, mobile retail and building hotels just to name but a few. Shipping containers can also be used as protective shelters for natural disasters or terrorist attacks.

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There are a lot of options for choosing appropriate material for building a safe bunker. Even though shipping container is not possibly the best alternative, due to its wide availability and cheap price, for average consumers it is perhaps the only option. A used shipping container can be purchased with approximately US$ 2000. The United States use over a million shipping containers annually to import products from abroad but because it is expensive to ship them back, most of them stay in the US. According to some estimates there are over 700,000 used shipping containers laying in US ports waiting for new use.

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Even though containers’ walls are designed to resist rough weather even in extreme conditions, most people like to bury their container bases in order to make it invisible. Still, one needs to take into consideration that the containers’ steel roofs are not made to last heavy loads. Containers are designed to lie on their four strong corners. The four corners also enable stacking various layers of containers. So therefore, after digging a hole for the container one should design a frame that supports adding a gabion basket on the container. The gabion basket filled with rocks will protect the container. See original articles for more detail.

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Where the containers’ exterior surrounding has some limitations, the interior design is basically free for users’ own imagination. Today some containers come with a electric generator and bathroom solutions making the containers livable apartments.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation has a long experience in offering high quality containers for shipping and housing. For more details of our containers and container houses, please see our website. Please also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. You can also download our mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Ttora.com, Treehugger.com, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Sourceable.net, Prepper-recources.com, Containerauction.com, Emyplanb.wordpress.com, followingfuji1.blogspot.com, Luxtica.com,

Bridging the Sustainability Gap

Ariel Sharon Park in Tel Aviv is set to become the largest new urban park built in the world with in the last century . Bigger than Central Park in New York, the Ariel Sharon Park is currently open in a limited format, and will be opened in stages until its completion in 2020. The park will provide new urban green space that centers its design elements on ideas of sustainability. One of the park’s coming attractions will be a 160-meter long bridge constructed entirely of shipping containers.

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Designed by Israeli firm Yoav Messer Architects Ltd., the ‘ECOntainer Bridge’ will provide aesthetically pleasing design, while serving the functional purpose of connecting the two sides of the river that runs through the new park. Construction is expected to be minimally invasive as the structure can be assembled off-site, and then transferred to the park location where it will be integrated with a new steel truss. Alongside the main bridge structure will be two cantilevering observation platforms that will offer expansive views of the new nature reserve.

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The new bridge is expected to accommodate light vehicle and pedestrian traffic to improve the flow throughout the park. Additionally, the modular nature of the structure will allow containers to be added or reduced should the need arise. Photo-voltaic solar cells will be installed to provide clean electricity to power the bridge’s interior and exterior lighting as well as interior display panels that keep visitors informed on park information.

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Once constructed, the ‘ECOntainer’ bridge will help to inspire new sustainable ideas in the container industry. Shanghai Metal Corporation currently provides a variety of shipping containers that can be custom tailored based on customer requests, and we someday hope to provide containers for innovative projects such as the ‘ECOntainer’ bridge.

To view our specific shipping container offerings, click here 

To view  metal and construction products as well as SMC company information check out our website: click here

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Source: “Yoav Messer Architects Ltd: ECOntainer Bridge, Israel – Designboom | Architecture & Design Magazine.” Designboom Architecture Design Magazine Yoav Messer Architects Ltd ECOntainer Bridge Israel Comments. Designboom, n.d. Web. 16 June 2014.

Images provided by:

design team: iftah hayner – architect in charge, hager admi, dani vainer

structural engineering: jacob & yuval achbert
graphic design: bluhm & tal