5 Surprising Ways To Use Old Shipping Containers

Nearly all international cargo–a full 95%–travels by ship. Shipping containers are the most cost-effective means of transporting large amounts of goods. However, these containers have many uses beyond moving dry cargo and perishables across the ocean.

With the average container lasting 20 years or more, most of them are repurposed for new uses after shipping. Learn about some of the most unexpected and creative applications of storage container modifications below.

1. Your next desk job might be inside a shipping container.

Perhaps one of the many things you didnt know about storage containers is that one of them may end up standing in for an actual building if you work in an office or at a desk job. Shipping container offices are especially trendy among startups and new businesses. Why?

Storage container offices are cost-efficient and eco-friendly. Entrepreneurs can start out with an office made out of one or two containers and add on to this building if their business continues to grow. In addition to being highly customizable, these types of offices are portable meaning that businesses can easily relocate if need be.

2. There are storage container restaurants!

That’s right! The storage container provides a perfect compromise between a food truck and a run-of-the-mill building. Just like you can modify storage containers to live in, a growing number of restaurants are modifying them to create kitchens, bars, and dining areas. Even Subway is getting on-board with this trend. One of its locations in New York City is crafted from nine repurposed shipping containers strung together.

3. Farmers are tackling challenges with 40 foot shipping containers.

It is not always possible to predict the weather–unless you can somehow create a predictable, temperature-controlled environment. With a storage container, you can. Many reefer containers are already equipped with temperature controls and ventilation systems that make it possible to ship fresh or frozen food items at a particular humidity.

Storage containers give farmers the freedom of growing crops anywhere, during any season. Farmers typically use fewer resources as they do not have to shield plants from animals and pests. Finally, if people wish to move or ship their farm, it is already self-contained, portable, and ready to go.

4. Some countries are using storage containers to re-grow coral reefs.

What are some things you didnt know about storage containers? More and more shipping containers are being recycled for specialty projects, including projects that may help save the planet. Some, in particular, are being used to create artificial coral reefs.

Cambodia is kicking off efforts by purposely sinking storage containers. Once underwater, fish use the containers as shelters and nurseries to repopulate dwindling fish populations. Just like we use farm-grown coral fragments to help repair and regrow existing reefs, these fragments can be placed strategically around underwater shipping containers to encourage and nurture new reefs.

5. Storage container homes are reducing homelessness and affording people more options.

Major cities including Los Angeles and London are experimenting with ways to curb their homeless populations using storage container housing. Shipping containers are cost-effective and eco-friendly, making them an appealing option for addressing homelessness.

For those reasons, shipping container homes also appeal to the general public. With storage containers, people can enjoy bigger homes for less. Plus, storage containers are extremely hardy, making them safe and durable in all weather conditions.

What are the things you didnt know about storage containers? Shipping containers are being put to new, exciting uses every day. Ask a shipping container company if your modification or crazy idea can become a reality.

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