Design Architecture Shipping Container House in Brooklyn Doesn't Make Sense, and I Don't Care By Lloyd Alter Design Editor University of Toronto Lloyd Alter is Design Editor for Treehugger and teaches Sustainable Design at Ryerson University in Toronto. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Lloyd Alter Updated October 11, 2018 ©. Melissa Breyer Share Twitter Pinterest Email Design Tiny Homes Architecture Interior Design Green Design Urban Design LOT-EK is one of the true pioneers of shipping container architecture; ten years ago we called them "among the best of the small crew of architects working with shipping containers, which are rarely seen in the urban context." © Melissa Breyer We complain about shipping container architecture all the time on TreeHugger, usually prefaced with that tired phrase "jump the shark" and this 5000 square foot house they built in Brooklyn is just completely nuts. We say that shipping container architecture doesn't make sense, and this doesn't either. But there is something about this house and I like it. © Melissa Breyer Designboom describes it: The shipping containers were stacked on top of each other, and cut diagonally along top and bottom to generate what the design team calls ‘a monolithic and private volume within the urban fabric’. Furthermore, the construction method optimizes material usage by recombining all leftovers generated by the diagonal cut. © LOT-EK via Designboom Indeed, there are some efficiencies, using the different parts of the wedges. LOT-EK Carroll House from LOT-EK on Vimeo. When you watch the video of this house being assembled, you can see that there is really almost nothing left of the shipping containers, sometimes a bit of wall and a bit of ceiling, and of course, the fancy iconic doors. © Danny Bright via Designboom And that fireplace! like the rest of the house, designed for its image, rather than any form of efficiency. © Danny Bright via Designboom To its credit, is one of the nicest home theater setups I have seen. © Melissa Breyer All the usual points about the silliness of shipping container housing apply here. There is no structural efficiency, there is no economy, it is impossible to insulate, it is one giant thermal bridge, it proves how shipping containers are not the right size for habitation (since they are cut to pieces) and everything about it is just about "look at me, look what I can do." As a building, it is totally nuts. © Melissa Breyer But wow, it's got drama. Like all of LOT-EK's container buildings, you can tell that there is an architect at work here. And it's interesting that the clients for this house have a bit of drama themselves, running popular Brooklyn restaurants that our Brooklyn-dwelling editor and photographer describes as a "total little empire that is almost too rustic-hipster-cool, but the quality is undeniable and they were there early so it doesn't feel painfully trendy." © Melissa Breyer That is actually the perfect description of this house: "almost too rustic-hipster-cool, but the quality is undeniable." Lots more photos on Designboom.