Spring semester 2017 Stephen will lead a graduate design studio in which students will transform shipping containers for community use.
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Shipping Container Design/build Course.at CityLab-Orlando
School of Architecture – University of Florida College of Design Construction and Planning
at the Center for Emerging Media
500 West Livingston Street
Course Number: ARC6355
Course Title: Advanced Studio II
Term: Spring 2017 (January through May)
In a sentence, the goal of this design studio is to give students the opportunity to be socially engaged in their community, while learning first hand about an innovative and sustainable construction unit, the upcycled shipping container, in the context of their pursuit of professional degree credit.
I have been working with the shipping container as a building material/unit since 2009, almost as long as I have been teaching. This is the first chance I have had to integrate my knowledge into a course. The timing could not be better. My relationship with Crisis Housing Solutions and other clients like Modpod Developers has taken this knowledge and the scale of the ideas to a much higher level. While the full intention of this partnership is to bring innovative affordable units of housing to Florida, we look for ways to impact communities along the way, using shipping containers. These projects will set the stage for later, larger developments by introducing people to containers up close in the context of their everyday lives.
This first project intends to offer assistance to the community that Citylab resides in. It is also a community that Crisis Housing Solutions is working as a result of the feasibility study we undertook together, Orlando.
This project will transform shipping containers into individually focused mobile design/action centers. One will be focused on Food and Farming in the City, Urban Horticulture. One will be focused on Street Life in the City, Intermodal Urbanism. With our limited time and funds, these first two are our top priority. A third, possibly later conversion, will be focused on Water and the City, Hydro-generated Urbanism.
The design will be undertaken under my guidance in the studio. The construction will be undertaken primarily by the students under my guidance with assistance and support of local contractors and suppliers. We have a guaranteed location to do the construction nearby to our studio facility.
The projects will be completed in time to be featured as (unofficial) demonstration pavilions at the 2017 American Institute of Architects National Convention which takes place in Orlando, April 27-29. https://
Following the conference, the containers will be positioned in Orlando neighborhoods and put to use. The Urban Horticulture container may have its first home as part of a community gardening project in downtown Orlando. The Intermodal Urbanism container may have its first home as part of a bicycle/pedestrian trail system in downtown Orlando. (*Locations may change as necessary but the community focused impact will remain.) The portability of the units means that their impact will be multiplied through be locations in future areas of need.