Could Shipping Containers Solve Homelessness?

Read time: Less than 3 Minutes

Key Takeaways:

  • Shipping container homes are a growing trend.
  • Experts say containers as homes are safe, for the most part.
  • Using shipping containers to curb homeless is slowly gaining traction across the globe.

There has been a rising trend in recent years of repurposing shipping containers as homes.  Promoted as a way to recycle the millions of containers that are no longer in use, this idea has gained traction across the globe.

However, container homes are not just being used to house environmentally conscious millennials.  Many local governments are considering the trend as a solution to homelessness.

Is it actually safe to live in a shipping container?

Shipping container home.

Providing that the container being turned into a living space, never held any hazardous or dangerous chemicals, experts say they are perfectly safe. Structurally, turning a steel container into a livable space, gets a little complicated.  Cutting open the container to make room for ventilation such as windows and doors, requires additional reinforcement to ensure the structure remains in tact.

Can this really help house homeless people?

The short answer is yes.  Shipping container units can be stacked and are an efficient way to house hundreds of people in one spot. Construction to turn shipping containers into livable spaces also takes much less time, meaning it could offer cities a way to support their homeless population that is cost-effective and time-efficient.

What places doing turning to containers as a solution for homelessness?  

Major U.S. cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, and places across the globe such as Bristol, U.K. have already started implementing container home programs for their homeless populations. Eventually, it is expected that other cities will follow suit depending on how it plays out in those cities who have greenlit such projects.

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