Bangalore Climbing Instructor Kameshwar Rao has designed and built India's first recycled shipping container home. Four recycled shipping containers, sourced by Rao from the Chennai docks, make up the 900 sq ft house. The containers are stacked in an L shape to allow the home to ventilate naturally. Extra space is created by opening up the container doors to add a bathroom at the side of the house, and a feature wall made from recycled beer bottles and an old cart wheel brings more light into the hallway.
Rao previously used shipping containers as an office space and he even stacked four containers vertically to build an artificial climbing wall at Sarjapur. When he worked in Germany in 2006 he lived in a shipping container mobile home which allowed him to experience the containers’ potential for use as living space. He was keen to create a home that could be easily packed up and moved.
Friends were skeptical about how the house would deal with India’s temperature extremes. However Rao’s wife Prema reports that it’s similar in temperature to the usual reinforced concrete and cement houses. Unlike conventionally constructed dwellings, the house was completed in just four months, will withstand earthquakes, is waterproof and at under 10 Lakhs (around $16000 dollars) was completed for less than half of the usual local cost. It could take time for the idea to be accepted by traditionalists, but with his new business ‘Container Solutions‘, Rao has made it easier for enterprising Indians to build their own shipping container homes.
Photos by Container Solutions India