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Box not-so-clever

Marc | 15:46 UK time, Friday, 19 October 2007

Ah, the joys of having an idea...

I'll be honest with you, the way I conceived how this piece would sound on air hasn't matched the reality. There seemed a lot of interest both on the internet and in the very first iPM meeting in the story - how using shipping containers could solve housing shortages.

The story had a number of intriguing angles: the trade imbalance with China means thousands of containers end up at docks on this side of the globe, but don't go back there because we don't export enough in return; aid agencies are examining using containers as emergency housing in areas hit by earthquakes; and the demand for low-cost housing, for students and key workers, could see containers coming into their own.

Trawling the internet turned up one of the UK's pre-eminent firms involved in transforming containers; I envisaged hearing a representative talk lyrically from inside what-was-once a container, all the audio having something of a metallic "twang" as our words bounced off the cargo shell. Sadly, for reasons I can't go into, that didn't happen.

Neither did I get to speak to the company involved in the stacking of shipping containers.
Neither could the council, which has several containers as offices, provide someone for me to interview.

Finally, I spoke to Adam Kalkin an architect based in New Jersey, who converts shipping containers into homes in America....

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