A rare multi-unit shipping container building is ready for occupancy in downtown Phoenix. Containers on Grand, designed and built by StarkJames, forges eight one-bedroom apartments out of 16 standard 40-foot-by-8-foot containers.
Hundreds of thousands of shipping containers sit idle in port cities, prompting their rediscovery by architects as a highly dynamic and interchangeable medium. But, says architect Wesley James, they are usually applied to single-family homes.
“Containers aren’t expensive or difficult to work with in and of themselves,” says James. “But it gets expensive and complicated bringing them up to code. It’s not yet an accepted building material.” Extra caution was taken during planning to satisfy codes. The containers were then joined and retrofitted with insulation, wiring, plumbing, windows, and drywall.
The apartments are 740 square feet and will rent for about $1,000 a month, beginning December 28. “We’re proud to have kept costs in line with conventional construction," James notes. "It’s enabled rents to be at or even slightly below market-rate for the area."