Primeira Casa de Contêineres - Who Built the FIRST SHIPPING CONTAINER HOME? - quién construyó la primera casa container

Do you think that when Malcom McLean developed the first maritime container, he imagined that they would be used as construction materials?

We don’t know, but two visionaries like Phillip Clark and Nicholas Lacey did. The first official document mentioning the use of containers as construction materials was published in 1962.

Who Built the First Shipping Container Home? Official Records

If we look for the first official record of a maritime shipping container converted into a home, we find a man named Phillip Clark. On November 23, 1987, Clark filed a patent titled “Method for converting one or more steel maritime transport containers into a habitable building.”

Within the patent, Clark describes how containers can be placed on a weight-supporting foundation to create a habitable building. He also claimed that containers are the perfect modular building material.

He also commented that repurposed containers can be used to make affordable homes. The patent took two years to be granted. On August 8, 1989, Clark received his approved patent # US4854094A.

If you are interested in learning more, the original patent can be viewed here.

So, where did Phillip Clark get his idea? Was he the first person to think containers could be used to build homes? Far from it. Just two years before Clark’s patent was filed, containers made their way to the big screen.

In 1985, in the movie “Space Rage,” maritime transport containers were used to create numerous buildings on the production set. We can go even further back to the 1970s when British architect Nicholas Lacey wrote his university thesis on the concept of reusing maritime transport containers and converting them into habitable dwellings.

Since then, he has gone on to build several such container-based structures with Urban Space Management. In fact, two of his constructions, Riverside Building Offices and Cove Park, were featured in our Top 10: Container Offices.

We can still find earlier examples of containers being used as buildings. The first official record we could find was from 1962.

On October 12, 1962, Insbrandtsen Company Inc. filed a patent titled “Combined Container and Showcase.” Within this patent, Christopher Betjemann was listed as the inventor and claimed that containers could be used as exhibition stands when companies were traveling and showcasing their products.

Patent # US3182424A was granted on May 11, 1965. You can view the original patent here.

Why Did Shipping Container Construction Become a Trend?

Ten years after the creation of containers for transport, people had the idea to build buildings with them. But why? In the United States, there are more imports than exports.

When goods are shipped to the country, they aren’t using the container to export the goods. This means there is a surplus of unused maritime transport containers. How much of a surplus?

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation: Maritime Administration, in 2012, the U.S. imported 17,541,120 TEUs but only exported 11,935,906.

A TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) is a unit of measurement. A TEU is equivalent to a standard 20-foot maritime transport container.

This means there was a surplus equivalent to more than 5 million 20-foot containers. Clearly, not all containers stay in the United States.

It would make sense to reuse the new containers in Asia, but in the U.S., there remains a significant number of containers.

This trend has been occurring for many years, and we have taken a snapshot of some recent data from the U.S. Department of Transportation: Maritime Administration.

Given that we have a large surplus of containers in the U.S., couldn’t we simply recycle them? A standard 40-foot maritime transport container weighs 8,820 pounds.

To melt this amount of steel, around 8,000 kW of energy would be needed, nearly the same amount of energy used by a household in the U.S. each year (Source).

The average amount of energy used to convert a container into a home takes around 400 kW, representing a reduction of around 95% compared to steel melting.

Building with maritime transport containers is environmentally friendly, but not only that, we also know that building homes with containers can be significantly cheaper than traditional houses.

The First Shipping Container Home Changes Traditional Construction

We know that people had the idea of building homes with containers in the USA in the 1980s. We also know that there is a surplus of containers in the USA to use. But how did container homes become a general trend?

The U.S. military helped establish the container as the standard method for shipping goods on ships. During the Vietnam War, the U.S. government was looking for a faster way to transport goods.

That’s when they adopted the container. The popularity of containers took off after that. During the Gulf War, the U.S. military used containers as emergency shelters because they could be quickly converted and easily fortified.

Containers were fortified by placing sandbags against their outer walls, which helped protect them from rocket-propelled grenades. After this, in 1994, Stewart Brand, an American writer, published a book titled “How Buildings Learn.”

In it, Brand continued to write ideas about how to convert containers into office spaces. This was the first publication to mention container construction as homes.

From here, container homes started gaining momentum, and the first complete construction we could find in the record was the “Simon’s Town High School Hostel.” The project was conceived when Safmarine donated forty used containers to Simon’s Town High School.

The school wanted to use the containers to build a hostel that could accommodate 120 people at once. The project cost a total of $227,000 and was ready for its first tenants on November 30, 1998.

The 21st Century and Container Homes

Following the success of the “Simon’s Town High School Hostel,” in 2006, Peter DeMaria, a Californian architect, designed the first container home in the USA.

Known as the Redondo Beach House, the house was approved according to the National Uniform Building Code and was completed in 2007.

This was the first real maritime transport container home. Since then, we’ve seen container homes all over the world! Some of the most famous ones include:

The popularity of container homes continues to rise, and it seems like they are becoming more popular every day, these affordable and sustainable homes. As container popularity continues to grow, we’ve seen many other surprising uses for them, including:

If you enjoyed learning about who built the first shipping container home and want more information, read about the amazing uses of containers on our blog. We want to hear your thoughts on the origins of container homes and who built the first shipping container home in the comments below.

¿Quieres saber como construir una casa con containers tu mismo? ¿Llevas días, semanas e incluso meses intentando encontrar una fuente de confianza?GUÍA COMPLETA CONSTRUYE TU CASA CON CONTAINERS«Tu casa con contenedores» es la única guía paso a paso que existe para construir tu propia casa con containers desde cero. No importa si no tienes conocimientos sobre construcción, si pensar en ello te da dolor de cabeza, si eres constructor o trabajas en una oficina. La guía está escrita para que cualquiera pueda entenderlo.  MAS INFORMACIÓN CLIC AQUÍ Construye Tu Casa con Contenedores Paso a PasoHágalo Usted Mismo

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.