Why Shipping Containers Are For More than Just Storage


Shipping containers are large steel boxes popular for the storage and transportation of goods. Many people will be familiar with the large containers seen on products boats — however they can be transformed for a variety of surprising uses.

Also known as intermodal shipping containers, they are made to be moved without unloading and reloading their contents. They can be transported on products boats, lorries and by railroad. Their utilization in international trade has led to extremely effective transport of consumer products and goods because containers can be transferred from ship-to-ship and never having to refill the ships’ products bays. They are strong and durable to protect their contents from harsh sea conditions during transport, and it is these characteristics that produce them suitable for uses other than the transport of goods.

To protect goods, containers are weatherproof and resistant to rain and wind. They range in size from 8 foot to 56 foot long making them suitable for storing a range of items. They can be stacked on top of each other and can be safely closed.

It is their durable nature and range in sizes that produce them suitable for many other uses. Shipping containers can be used as offices, canteens, accommodation, store rooms, changing rooms, workshops, vehicle storage and much more.

The process of customising a container is known as a conversion. Common additions include windows, doors, ac, warmth, domestic plumbing, electrics and shelving. Because containers come in different sizes and can be stacked, they can be joined together to create custom size buildings with multi-levels joined by internal or external staircases. Side doors or draperies, roller shutters, ramps, generators and dampness controls can be added to give the container a different purpose.

Large scale innovative uses will include a student shipping containers for sale gold coast accommodation town in Amsterdam made out of shipping containers. Keetwonen is the biggest accommodation block in the world to be made out of shipping containers. The preconception was that the rooms would be small, impersonal and either too cold or too hot. However, these fears have turned out to be unproven and the accommodation is large, well protected and fantastic affordable.

Another large shipping container conversion project is ‘BoxPark’, a shopping hub built from containers in London. The development costs are low so these savings can be passed about the shop tenants. It can also be built far more quickly than the usual conventional retail complex.

Not all conversion projects are so large though. Shipping containers can be great value as single permanent or temporary building solutions because they last way too long. Shipping containers can be hired or bought from specialist suppliers.

Whether you may hire or buy a shipping container will depend on your finances and requirements. Suppliers will be able to supply restored used containers which will be much cheaper than new units and these can be a cost effective solution. Many suppliers of containers offer shipping container sales services too, or will be happy to recommend a suitable container conversion company. Transporting containers can be expensive, particularly over long miles, because of the cost of truck and crane hire and fuel. You can lower costs by finding suppliers in areas near to you.

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