Collection by Tiffany Jow

In Indonesia, a Green-Roofed Container Home Stands Up to the Heat

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A shipping container home tackles temperature control in a tropical environment

For a site southeast of Jakarta, a young Indonesian couple asked eco-minded firm Atelier Riri to design a fun, contemporary home with designated spaces for their two kids to exercise their creativity. The project’s modest budget (approximately $55,000) led the architects to use shipping containers—a bold move given the region’s sweltering climate. “By concentrating on humidity and temperature control, we found economical ways to facilitate a comfortable environment inside a metal box,” says the firm’s founder, Novriansyah Yakub. His team crisscrossed four containers Lincoln Log-style and added shutters, windows, and sliding doors to create a cross-ventilation system. Layers of recycled pine, glass wool, and planter mesh on top of the containers further decrease temperature. Cost-effective elements continue inside the three-bedroom home, including custom wood furnishings and polished concrete floors. A roof garden equipped for rainwater harvesting connects to the residence’s crown jewel: a bright red game room, now chock-full of toys.

Atelier Riri devised creative ways to make living inside a shipping container in Indonesia’s tropical climate both...
The 1,668-square-foot three-bedroom home is made of four colorful, crisscrossed containers equipped with a simple...
A rich pine exterior complements the brick, which was painted white as a means to minimize the use of cement.
The top of the residence is wrapped in simple wire mesh to encourage plant propagation.
Natural light pours into the open-plan house, which is outfitted with low-cost materials like polished concrete floors...
The hobby room features a custom desk and shelving system that Atelier Riri designed and manufactured themselves.
A sliding glass door in the downstairs living room leads to an outdoor patio and green space.
In one of the home’s three bathrooms, a TOTO toilet is illuminated by LED light fixtures from OSRAM.
A cherry red game room gives way to a second green space on the roof, which can be used as an extension of the indoor...
Covered with wire mesh, the green roof will continue to vegetate over time.

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