Temporary Shipping Container City Built in Amsterdam

containers overall© O+A Architects

James Holloway at Gizmag points to a shipping container project that I missed last summer, a temporary installation for Over het IJ, an avant-garde theatre festival. The architects, O+M, tell Gizmag that the project took four days to build, ran for two weeks, and then took two days to dismantle.

theatre© O+A Architects

The architects write:

The brief was simple: use the festival's literal building block - the shipping container - to create the beating heart of the event. Besides the central hospitality space, the containers offer ample context for the theatrical artists..... With a height of four layers, the mountain of containers manages to justify its presence between the large warehouses of the former shipyard.

container detail© O+A Architects

What is most interesting about this project is that it uses shipping containers the way they were designed to be used: stacked corner casting on top of corner casting. Even totally full, they can stack nine high like this. O+M have staggered them, but always place them corner to corner. Note the wires added as diagonal bracing.

court© O+A

It's not a real building, it's more of a theatrical device that defines space. But it does it really well.

model© O+A via Gizmag

In my post on a shipping container hotel, I anthropomorphized a bit when I said "shipping containers were designed to move. They don't want to sit still. The genius of the container isn't the box, it's the handling system. To there credit, O+A get this.

Tags: Netherlands | Shipping Containers


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