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Client – Tom Fox

Completed – 2012

Client/Program Information – The Fox Residence was our first shipping container architecture project. Tom Fox is a long-time client. I have worked with Tom on personal and commercial projects for many years. I bought my first house through Tom. Tom came to me with the shipping container idea and a number of specific requests; a very energy efficient and low-impact home, a house that can accommodate roommates yet provide him privacy, a house that provides a large amount of storage space, a house that can be closed up while he travels or during one of our infamous Florida storms.

Design Solution – The Fox Residence is an alternative housing solution. It is constructed using Inter-modal Steel Building Units (ISBUs), commonly known as shipping containers. What we came up with is a configuration of nine 40′ high cube containers and one 20′ high cube container. The 40-footers are arranged in a three-story bank of two and a three-story stack one container wide, with a four-foot gap in between. The gap contains vertical circulation and space for routing building systems. This creates a home with 2450 square feet of conditioned space on top of a 1200 square foot garage and workshop. The construction rests on a continuous perimeter grade beam with a few pad footings. In order to create open space in the plan a significant amount of container wall panel had to be removed. Structural steel has been designed and added to carry loads. The container doors remain in place and operable. We designed a two-story screened porch and balconies that provide outdoor space on the south facade. The balconies are retractable, folding away and allowing the doors to be swung shut as needed.

The containers will not receive any additional exterior cladding. The expression of their unitized construction is expressed honestly in each elevation. However, a south-facing screened porch, balconies and entrance stair create an appealing street front for SW 6th Place, and a green wall system, planted with flowering vines will cover the east-facing facade along SW 5th Terrace. Together with the existing pecan tree, this street front will be like a three-dimensional garden. An 8kw solar array will share the roof top with a green roof system.

Exploded View by Lance Moore /Gretel Castillo

entry stair and porch – 1
steel reinforcement – 2
green wall – 3
circulation and utility gap- 4
solar trees – 5

The project gained LEED for Homes Platinum Certification and FGBC Certification.

Project Team

Architect and LEED Administrator
Stephen D. Bender, AR94748
bndr, llc (formerly MWBa)

Structural Engineer
Gregory S. Wayland, P.E.
Wayland Structural Engineering

LEED Green Rater and Energy Consultant
Mary Alford, P.E. #68187, LEED AP
The Sustainable Design Group, LLC
mary.alford ”at”

FGBC Certifiying Agent
Michael Amish, LEED GA
Direct- 352.328.7721
michaelamish “at”

Tom Fox, Owner-Builder with
Ben Bressack
BB Hammerers Inc.
CBC 1254269
beenbenbress “at”
Permitted in a most amazing fashion in the City of Gainesville.Thank you Doug Murdock and staff!