Shipping Container Homes as an Alternative1

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Rationale of the Study
Containerization is a system of freight transport that transports trade goods from ports to ports. This system is based on a range of steel intermodal containers (also "shipping containers").These containers are built to standardized dimensions and can be loaded and unloaded, stacked, transported efficiently over long distances, and transferred from one mode of transport to another. Thus, it provided an economic way to ship 90% of the world trade goods across the globe and as a result has benefited society in providing for a truly open market to buy and sell goods. Cebu is home to national and international corporations whose trading hub is centered in the international port (cargo and container) which is currently one of the busiest in the country.

About 80% of domestic and international shipping operators and shipbuilders are located in Cebu. However, the revolution of the shipping containerization has also led to massive excesses of these containers. In some cases, Cebu imports more goods than it exports resulting to hundreds of empty, unused containers that remain stack in port cities and inland freight terminals. As a result, it poses a serious disposal problem on any shipping company.

On another theory, Cebu’s real estate industry growth continued in an upward trajectory as is evident in the number of construction projects in the city. The real estate sector is banking on the robust growth of the business processing outsourcing and the tourism industries to continue to spur more demand this year for commercial, office and residential projects. Cebu is enjoying a construction boom with the expansion [of several developments] and [the presence of] new players in (sectors such as) business process outsourcing, hotels and universities and road infrastructure.” Construction activities around the city have become more dynamic at present with more developments in the pipeline that continue to diversify from horizontal to vertical projects.

However, the rise of these projects is somehow accompanied with the increasing number of construction companies in Cebu. Cebu’s construction industry is expected to post an eight percent year-on-year growth in the next 12 years amidst frenetic activity in several sectors. This would not only prevent the construction company from achieving competitive advantage but would also be detrimental to their sales. ORCEO ARCHITECTS DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION, which we contact as our partner institution, admitted that it’s one of the major problems they would inevitably face in the future. It would be then difficult for them to cope up with the industry if they wouldn’t do something about it.

Furthermore, the increasing economic activity within the city fueled demand for more residential units. Alveo Land’s Solinea will initially bring in 591 units for the first towers. “This reflects the increasing number of condominium units which is expected to grow by 74 percent to over 5,000 units completed in 2011, together with an expanding office space that may reach to some 460,000 square meters of usable area or 15 percent more than in 2010 in Cebu. In the point of view of the developer, the industry may do pretty well in these projects and with the upbeat prospects of the economy more and more people are now venturing into business. This development had helped specifically the fresh graduates by providing them more jobs and an opportunity to venture into business. However, the fact that buildings and spaces this year have experienced occupancy and rental rates on the rise would deprive them this kind of opportunity. The idea of building their businesses or even houses in this kind of city would not be practical. High cost, Unsustainable practices and huge amount of waste created by building conventional establishments makes alternatives look better and better.

One man’s trash is said to be another man’s treasure, and now these old...
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