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终极废物利用:集装箱式生存

Beth Kowitt 2011年11月15日

这或许算得上废物利用的极致:将退役的海运集装箱改造为建筑。SG Blocks认为,它能把这个想法发展成大买卖。

    今天我们要介绍的或许算得上废物利用的极致:那就是将退役的海运集装箱改造为建筑。在港口或建筑工地附近,这类非正式的临时性住房并不少见,不过,保罗•加尔文的SG Blocks公司希望能让主流社会接受这种形式的住宅。

    若非亲眼目睹,该公司的神奇业务简直令人难以置信。这家公司的出现顺应了两大趋势:预制构件建筑越来越获得认可;世界经济越来越强调绿色环保。“建筑业所有人都在追求绿色环保,我也一样。”房地产开发商、SG Blocks投资者彼得•苏德勒称。

    该公司创始人兼首席执行官加尔文还指出,集装箱建筑有下列优势:根据建设位置不同,其建设成本通常要比传统建筑低10-12%;建设时间低40%;而且更能抵御飓风等极端天气的侵袭。每个集装箱重大8,000磅,长40英尺,可承载5万磅重量,如果客户需要的话,集装箱还可以一层层叠起来。加尔文称,这一特性使完工后的集装箱建筑看起来就像巨型钢铁蜂巢。

    建设流程如下:港口运营商为SG Blocks供应退役集装箱,并直接在港口就地完成改造工作,即切割箱体,嵌入门窗。加尔文的企业随后在建筑安放地或中转地完成工作。集装箱外体还可以加上砖头或木板,不过加尔文称大多数客户都希望凸显自己重视绿色环保这一事实。“他们喜欢维持方方正正的造型,并露出一些集装箱的风貌。”他补充说。(参见下面的照片。)

    It may be the ultimate recycling project: taking retired shipping containers and repurposing them as buildings. It's not uncommon to see these makeshift structures informally in use around ports or construction sites, but now Paul Galvin is trying to bring them into the mainstream with his company SG Blocks.

    It's a you-have-to-see-it-to-believe-it endeavor that's getting a boost from the confluence of two trends: a growing acceptance of prefabricated construction and the greening of the economy. "Everyone is going green in construction, as am I," says Peter Sudler, a real estate developer and investor in the company.

    It doesn't hurt that Galvin, the company's founder and CEO, says his projects, depending on the location, are typically 10% to 12% cheaper than traditional construction, cut 40% off construction time and are more resistant to extreme weather like hurricanes. Each container weighs 8,000 pounds, is 40 feet long and can hold some 50,000 pounds. The containers can be stacked depending on a customer's needs, a quality Galvin says likens the finished project to a giant steel honeycomb.

    Here's how it works: port operator Conglobal Industries sources the retired containers for SG Blocks (SGBX) and modifies them right at the ports, cutting in windows and doors. Galvin's operation then either coordinates the finish work at the job site or an interim location. Any exterior finish like brick or wood can be added, but Galvin says most clients want to highlight the fact that they're going green. "They'll leave it very rectangular and some of the container exposed," he adds. (See sample photos at right.)

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