Architectural building design with refurbished shipping containers: a typological and modular approach

  • Luís Bernardo University of Beira Interior
  • Luiz Pereira-de-Oliveira
  • Ana Marques


Construction of housing buildings using refurbished shipping containers constitutes a successful recent building system. As construction modules, disposed and recycled containers are considered to contribute for a sustainable construction system. This article aims to contribute to a better understanding on this construction system, in particular the architectural project. A methodology based on the typological and modular coordination is proposed as a key tool to help for the development of spatial arrangements by considering the shipping container as a unit/module. The functional occupation typologies were proposed to characterize the main housing activities to be considered in modular coordinated design, allowing to adapt the housing to the family needs according to their social and cultural dynamics. The module constitution and geometry considering two commercial maritime shipping containers are presented.