In this video we explore and learn how to use shipping containers as strong, durable and mobile building blocks to create amazing structures of all kinds, like a house, addition, office space, or cabin; and we feature a few stunning projects to get you inspired!
Anthony Ruggiero from Storstac Inc. ( showed us around their yard in Toronto, Ontario and took the time to teach us about the ins and outs of building with shipping containers. We’re excited to share the tips and information we learned with you.
Shipping containers come in standard 20 foot and 40 foot lengths, and there are other specialty custom sizes like the 10′, 45′, 48′, 53′ long containers.
Almost all shipping containers are made in China, and can be bought used (after they’ve been used for 10-20 years), or new, which means they’ve one been used once.
Since there are no shipping manifests for used containers to show what was transported in them over the course of their lifetime (it could be anything from clothes to nuclear waste), it’s better to build with a new shipping container that’s only been used once.
They’re made with COR-TEN steel, which is a weathering steel that can withstand harsh weather conditions and elements like salt water because the rust on weathering steel creates a protective patina to keep it strong, whereas rust on mild steel would actually weaken the metal.
While building with shipping containers is not necessarily cheaper than conventional building, it does have advantages because the containers are modular, movable and mobile, durable, and have a unique, modern look.
They can be do it yourself friendly if you’ve worked with steel before, or if you find a company to take care of the steel work for you so you can focus on how to frame it and finish it from the inside.
Let us know what you think of shipping containers as alternative building blocks in the comments!
And if you’re interested in learning more about Storstac and the projects they’ve worked on, check out the links below:
New Old Stock – LA Man Cave
Harlem House Addition in Toronto
Rogers Fan Hub in Toronto
Thanks for watching!
Mat & Danielle
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Music & Song Credits:
All music in this video was composed, performed, and recorded by Mat of Exploring Alternatives.
Mat and Danielle of Exploring Alternatives
Interview and B-roll by Mat of Exploring Alternatives
Drone footage and photos by Anthony Ruggiero
Harlem House rendering by Javid Jah
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