the pod – prototype

Dekalb Market, in Brooklyn, has issued Not Just a Container Contest to design an alternate use for a shipping container to be used at the upcoming open air market.  From their website:

“The goal of the competition is to support the growth of Brooklyn’s creative community by helping a local entrepreneur realize his or her dream of opening a bricks and mortar location and to raise awareness of the Dekalb Market.

In the spirit of the Dekalb Market, Contestants will be judged on the following:

KEY CRITERIA. Design Quality, Sustainability, Community Impact, and Entrepreneurship.

SUGGESTIONS. Uses for the space could be, but are not limited to: a farm structure, store, art installation, work-sell space, restaurant, sports and music venue.

PRIZES. Our winner will be awarded with a container license (work/sell space) rent free for six months, $3K design/construction budget and free consultation, select construction materials from Green Depot, one year membership to 3rd Ward, one year membership to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, press exposure and online feature at”

The competition officially closed April 9th and now we’re waiting to see who is the lucky winner.  For my entry, I decided not to so much focus on a specific function, but rather focus on how to modify a container to be the most versatile and adaptable to changing needs within the Market as a whole.

copywrite 2011 r | one studio arch

As I’m sure these containers are not meant to house permanent tenants, but rather rotating vendors who may or may not be conducting all manor of business, it’s important that the container be designed to a minimum and remain flexible, providing a number of potential options.

By taking one long panel out and fabricating two horizontal “doors” we create both an overhang and a small porch that can be used for display or gathering or seating, etc.  The existing doors for the container can function as a default “entrance” or remain closed depending on the intended use.

copywrite 2011 r | one studio arch

The short rear wall of the container is fashioned with a solid surface counter, base cabinet and upper cabinet storage.  A sink and plumbing can be easily added if necessary with water supplied via hose connection at the rear.  The remaining wall is finished with studs and tongue and groove wood and attached are hinged tables, or platforms, at various heights that can be folded down in several combinations to create small work/display areas as needed.  Electricity is supplied by the two solar panels affixed to the top of the container and are hinged so that when closed the panels can fold flat.  The batteries and other electrical panels are stored in the upper cabinets.

copywrite 2011 r | one studio arch

Ultimately The Pod is a very simple design but with nearly unlimited flexibility to be adapted to almost any use: art gallery/studio, small music venue, office, shop, cafe, produce vendor, etc.  If you’d like to talk about designing and fabricating your own Pod, contact us here and lets get started.

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