Living Inside the Box

Michele Bertomen and David Boyle bought an empty 20-by-40-foot lot in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. They planned to build something traditional, but when the bid for the masonary envelope (the building without plumbing, electricity) came back at over 0,000, they re-evaluated. The couple decided to try shipping containers–which cost them about ,000 for the building envelope. Bertomen, an architect, and Boyle, the general contractor, designed and oversaw construction of their home. We stopped by for a tour.

25 thoughts on “Living Inside the Box”

  1. The first shipping container home in New York City. Don’t ask me which
    borough (because I really don’t care). Like with any unconventional and low
    cost construction they ran into a series of manmade obstacles but were able
    to overcome them.

  2. Too sad this would never be possible here in Germany. I´m 100% sure there
    are 1000 regulations against this. But it´s an awesome concept…

  3. i predict it will become in vogue to build homes like this, and those
    shipping containers will quadruple in price as a real estate commodity,
    increasing the cost of all goods shipped around the world. 

  4. This is amazing and way too cool . . . Michele Bertoman and David Boyle are
    to be commended for daring to dream and bringing this great house into
    fruition.

    I wonder if, because the house’s structure is so unconventional, the design
    had to be submitted for fire studies so that building inspectors could know
    how it might behave in the event of a catastrophic fire. Also, does the
    60,000 lb spec on a shipping container still hold up if you cut it to
    create windows and other openings?

  5. Michele Bertomen and David Boyle bought an empty 20-by-40-foot lot in
    Williamsburg, Brooklyn. They planned to build something traditional, but
    when the bid for the masonary envelope (the building without plumbing,
    electricity) came back at over $300,000, they re-evaluated. The couple
    decided to try shipping containers–which cost them about $50,000 for the
    building envelope. Bertomen, an architect, and Boyle, the general
    contractor, designed and oversaw construction of their home.

  6. Michele was my Fundies Professor at NYIT in Manhattan. She did a great job
    of bringing the creativity out of every student. She was a great person and
    a great professor. 

  7. Congratulations you did the impossible, how can I find out more details
    from you as far as the permits and what obstacles not to run into thank you
    Joel

  8. These people are awesome. I hope Kirsten Dirksen does a video showing the
    house and talking more about their story.

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