Affordable Housing made from Shipping Containers – Workshop. Stephen Bender and Craig Vanderlaan, Florida Housing Coalition Annual Conference, Orlando, Florida, September 13, 2016. http://www.flhousingconference.org/agenda

In this workshop, a nonprofit developer will share the results of an extensive feasibility study, conducted in Florida, comparing traditional concrete block construction to the use of shipping containers as a building material for both multifamily and single family structures. Building code, zoning and local ordinance challenges will be discussed. An experienced architect and builder of container housing will speak about the efficacy of shipping containers as a building material for the creation of spacious affordable housing. He will cover availability, durability, resiliency, adaptability, sustainability and efficiency of containers and container architecture. This is a great opportunity to see how creativity, research and collaboration can lead to solutions to Florida’s cost-burdened housing dilemma.

Efficacy of Shipping Container Upcycling: Comparison of Environmental Impacts Between Two Housing Systems, Stephen Bender and Bradley Guy, ACSA Fall Conference / Modular Building Institute, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 27-29, 2012

Upcycling shipping containers, also known as intermodal steel building units (ISBUs), for use in the construc­tion of a variety of building types has been adopted as a green building strategy. This paper contributes to the literature on use of life cycle assessment (LCA) for whole-building (operational and embodied) quantification of the environmental impacts of the built environment and specifically for this modular construction strategy. The primary environmental impact metrics for the operational energy are site energy use, source energy use and resulting greenhouse emissions expressed as global warming potential (GWP) and the embodied environ­mental impacts are GWP, resource use, acidification potential, eutrophication, ozone depletion potential, res­piratory effects, and smog potential. The study compares these impacts between four construction variants of the Fox Container Residence: conventional wood-frame construction, new ISBUs (100 percent impacts), used ISBU (50 percent impacts), retired ISBUs (0 percent impacts).

“Fox Container Residence – Lessons Learned, LEED for Homes” Stephen Bender, Keynote Speech for USGBC Heart of Florida Chapter Annual Meeting, Gainesville, Florida, December 5, 2012

“Shipping Container Architecture Design Solution for the Fox Residence – Gainesville, Florida” Invited lecture focusing on sustainability. Gainesville Branch of ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) approved for 1PDH, Gainesville, Florida (5 Jan 2012)

“Fox Container Residence Tours 1” For USGBC Heart of Florida Chapter, USGBC University of Florida Student Chapter and open to the public, Gainesville, Florida (17 Sept 2011)

“Shipping Container Architecture; the Fox Container Residence” Hosted by the AIAS, University of Florida School of Architecture, Gainesville, Florida (15 Sept 2011)

“Fox Container Residence Tours 2” For USGBC Heart of Florida Chapter and open to the public, Gainesville, Florida (13 Aug 2011)

“PechaKucha GNV 4/Eco,” What do community gardens, cave diving exploration, and houses built from shipping containers have in common? Hosted by VOLTA Coffee, Tea & Chocolate, Gainesville, Florida (22  Mar 2011)

“Shipping Containers as Transitional Housing” Invited lecture for Inter Faith Hospitality Network, Gainesville, Florida (22 Feb 2011)

“The Fox Residence and Shipping Container Possibilities in Redevelopment” Invited lecture for Community Redevelopment Agency, Gainesville, Florida (5 Oct 2010)


2014     Stephen assisted The University of Florida Bateman Team and UF organization Catalysts for Change mount “Imagine … a Place called Home,” a month-long campaign to raise awareness for housing needs. The installation includes a shipping container. Current college seniors, Elliot Levy, Valeria Yulee, Karilla Dyer, Andrea Cepeda and Trisha Tucker. I will be a panelist in their news conference with Corey Harris, Neighborhood Housing Development Corporation and Sherry Ahrentzen; Shimberg Center for Housing Studies. February 19, 2015, 6pm, 1064 Weimer Hall (Gannett Auditorium) http://www.homeimagined.com/

NCARB IDP mentor for multiple interns since 2010.

Appointed Member, Downtown Redevelopment Advisory Board, Gainesville, Florida (1996-1999); City Commission appointed member of the citizen board that advises the Community Redevelopment Agency about downtown redevelopment issues during first major public/private development incentive program.


2012 City of Gainesville Beautification Award for “Almond’s Automotive at City Line Marathon”

2012  AIA Chapter Award R-5 (Residential) Merit Award; Fox Container Residence


2012       “Architectural Design Competition for Cade Museum of Creativity & Invention” Second ranked entry. MW Bender Architecture teamed up with SsD (Single speed Design, Boston|NYC) and was short-listed to compete in the National Design Competition for the Cade Museum of Creativity and Invention. Our team was one of six to be shortlisted out of 25 national firms submitting qualifications. The competition jury included both local and national members. The team included engineers from ARUP Boston office and UF faculty team members, Michael Richmond (UF SoA) and Ravi Srinivasan (UF BCN).

2011       “Photocatalytic Air Treatment System” Faculty Mentor for 2011 BIOMIMICRY STUDENT DESIGN CHALLENGE  entry by interdisciplinary student team, Team Eureka! Christine Phillips (Bdes 2013), Tatum Norrell, Santiago Gangotena (Bdes 2013), Jose Abreu (Bdes 2013), Joshua Treadway (Bdes 2013) and Miguel A. Morales, E.I. (Ph.D. Eng 2014) <http://www.biomimicrydesignchallenge.com/gallery>

2011       “Florida Hybrid Shipping Container Home Prototype” Entry to the CSH/FL Case Study Housing for Florida: Sustainable by Necessity. Florida Foundation for Architecture 4th Annual Design Competition 2011. Less than1500 square feet  and less than $70/sf.

2011       “ResonanceBox: Shipping Container as Musical Instrument” Entry to the 2011 Music in Architecture – Architecture in Music Design and Composition Competition. Center for American Architecture and Design and the Butler School of Music at the University of Texas at Austin. Mode 1 (Music in Architecture): proposal for the design of a temporary outdoor acoustical performance space for an original composition played by the composer. Musician collaborator; AliCheRee.

Friedrich, Lauren. “Stephen Bender: Fox Residence” Architrave Issue 19 (http://ufarchitrave.com), School of Architecture at the University of Florida. (November 2011)  http://ufarchitrave.com/?p=273