We have often wondered whether shipping container housing makes sense. But this one, the Kin Kin Container House, certainly does. It's in the Shacks and Studios issue of my favorite green shelter magazine, Sanctuary.
The shipping container, which was on the property when Troy Walker bought it, provides the solid anchor for the house but is in fact less than half the floor area. Troy is a boilermaker by trade so he knows how to work with steel, cut out the side of the shipping container to open it up, and used the pieces to build the bathroom. The rest is welded up from steel to fit around the windows.
Everything is found and recycled, from the seventies vintage jalousie windows to the hardwood poles. There is no insulation; just exposed steel and plywood and a really big hat; Troy tells Emma Scragg of Sanctuary what most people who try to use shipping containers learn quickly: "the biggest thing with these boxes is to keep them out of the sun."
Troy also learns why it is so much easier to go to the Big Box lumber yard:
"Recycling is very costly." He spent endless hours trawling Gumtree [Gympie? ] and local salvage yards and brought all of the materials up on the back of his Hilux [Toyota pickup].
The house has what Sanctuary calls "passive design" where the overhangs are designed to let in the lower winter sun but block the higher summer sun. Almost everything in the house is recycled, including the bathroom sink and fire pit, which were made out of a stainless steel beer keg.
The house is a hit on AirBnB, where the invitation reads:
Kin kin is in the heart of Noosa hinterland only 30 minutes drive to Noosa. Enjoy brand new 90sqm architecturally appreciated cabin made from a shipping container. All modern amenities from a 50" flat screen TV, Weber bbq, stove, oven, surround sound system, king size bed, shower, wifi etc.. Come and have a memorable holiday experience in a cabin built by appreciating ecological values and sustainable living. Hybrid solar power charges up all electronics and bi-fold glass doors and louvres makes the space very airy and cool.
Now that makes sense and sounds like fun.