So I’ll start talking about this home in Brooklyn by first going way Down Under to Christchurch, New Zealand.
From the early 2000s, Christchurch has been devastated by a series of earthquakes, but they are rebuilding. However, being an island nation, a lot of the good that come into Christchurch come in large shipping containers, as big as whole rooms, and some folks took to using the shipping containers to quickly rebuild the shops and offices in the town, while others used the containers to rebuild their own homes.
Up in Brooklyn, the Irving Place Carriage House was a nice simple row-house on a street of row-houses. As usual, though, the space wasn’t big enough for the owners and their family, so the 1930s two-level carriage house was remodeled to add a penthouse on top.
And that was achieved by the insertion of a single vertical volume—a shipping container—that crosses the entire house from the roof to the ground where the penthouse, retrofitted from four shipping containers, provides access to a rooftop deck.
The vertical volume—orange, like the penthouse containers—intersects the carriage house and organizes kitchen, bathrooms, mechanical space, and the stairs, whose incline generates all of the diagonal cuts.
This volume also separates the space in two: at the ground level there is an entrance and mud room in the front with dining and living spaces at the rear; at the upper level, the master bedroom is in the front and kid’s bedroom at the rear.
I like the ingenuity of using the shipping container, end up, as a sort of room, staircase, mechanicals closet, but, while I like orange, this might be a bit too much orange.
Still, you gotta give credit to a mind that created a stacked shipping container inside a nearly one-hundred –year-old house as a means of expanding the space.