How Shipping Containers Outperform Conventional Modular Construction


We’re often asked about the differences between shipping containers and conventional modular construction. Clearly, we’re biased. But for good reason. Here are a few of the primary benefits of using shipping containers vs. traditional modular construction.

When the Facility has to be Relocated

At their core, ISO shipping containers are two things – 1) durable, and 2) mobile.  Because they’re created to be moved over land and sea, as well as by forklift and crane, shipping containers are crafted to withstand the rigors of mobility.  The integrity of the container, as well as its contents, remains intact.  Plus, because they’re literally designed to face any weather on earth, there are never any warped wooden support beams, or cracked spans that have lost their strength due to exposure to weather extremes like the winters in the upper Midwest or summers in the western regions of Texas. Containers are designed to hold up. Here. There. Anywhere.

Retrofitting is More Efficient

When shipping containers are the base structure of a facility, “The Box” becomes a container for the modular internal components that can be designed for easy change, upgrades, and maintenance.  Walls, electronics, lighting, HVAC, water utilities, are all important factors that to consider when it comes to general wear. Shipping containers offer a sturdier, more adaptable platform for change without interfering with the integrity of the structure. It’s about being tough and flexible.

Shipping Containers Cost Less to Transport than Oversized Modular Buildings

An 8 foot wide modified shipping container travels much better and for much less cost than standard 12 foot and 14 foot modular constructed buildings. Do the math, and consider destructive levels of physical stress that are put on the inner core strengths of conventional modular constructed buildings.  “The Box” travels better. Period. There really is no comparison.


On the surface, the initial cost to purchase a modified shipping container solution might appear to be out of whack compared with conventional modular buildings. But scratch the surface, and things change. Consider the transportation costs for oversized loads, then consider the cost to maintain the facility from normal usage, now add on the weather extreme issues. When you do, “The Box” wins every time.