There has been a bit of a lull in shipping container housing projects lately, though it seems the trend is still alive and well. The Danish firm CPH Containers are planning to build affordable student housing using repurposed shipping containers. They will be doing so in collaboration with Søren Nielsen of Vandkunsten Architects, and the first such student housing village, which will be located in Copenhagen, is slated to be completed by the end of this year.


They plan to create several shipping container student villages and the first prototype unit has already been constructed. It is called CPH Shelter and was made out of a single 40-ft (12-m) shipping container to which a two-floor polycarbonate structure has been added. This part is actually a winter garden, and glows to resemble a lantern at night.


The interior of the home is comprised of a living/dining area, kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom, which is equipped with a shower and toilet. The bedroom also features a daybed. There is enough space in the winter garden to grow food and such, as well as for lounging. The walls and floors of the container were clad in sustainably-harvested Swedish pine, and the ceiling is covered with fire-retardant fiberboards. The basic shape of the container was left intact, though large holes were cut into the sides to create windows, which are fully operable.

In a climate such as that of Denmark, keeping warm is essential, so the container was insulated with wood fiber and paper-wool insulation, while the home also features an automated mechanical ventilation system and an efficient heat pump. The polycarbonate winter garden also traps warmth on sunny days, effectively warming the container.

The Copenhagen municipal council has already approved the project, so plans are underway to begin construction. They hope to build 2000 student housing units by 2019. These will be separated into villages, each of which will consist of 300-400 units of affordable student dwellings.