MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Shipping containers are no longer just used to move goods from one place to another. A house built with shipping containers in Minnesota will make its home in north Minneapolis, boasting a unique design that’s providing much-needed affordable housing.

A three-bedroom, two-bathroom house is bringing something unique to Irving Avenue in North Minneapolis.

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“This is the first shipping container home in the Twin Cities. We got two 40-foot containers here and a 20-foot container over here we added the third container to give you that feeling of being in a spacious house,” said David Schiller.

Designer and builder David Schiller believes a downstairs bathroom and bedroom allow new residents to spread out.

“He had a vision, he put it to life, and definitely shows the passion behind each of the materials he put inside the home, from the tiles, from the color scheme, to the wood countertops. He wanted everything to be a draw,” Steiner said.

The house is made out of three shipping containers on the ground floor and, on the top floor, two additional shipping containers. The designer wanted to keep the shipping container feel center stage of this project.

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“One of the things I like most about building with shipping containers is, what we did is, we utilized the doors of the shipping containers to make this balcony,” Schiller said.

The spacious jack-and-jill bathroom separates the two upstairs bedrooms that feature balconies. Lots of natural light floods both upstairs and downstairs, and outside, ten apple trees planted to begin what Schiller calls the North Side Orchard.

Realtor Amber Steiner believes this may be the first of its kind but it won’t be the last.

“There are plenty of lots around here affordable lots so why not take something like this that’s unique and beautiful and put it on those lots,” Steiner said. “The metal the stone the true earthiness of it all it stands out from all the other houses you see in the neighborhood.”

The Minnesota Housing Program helps contractors build affordable homes. Paragon Designs hopes to sell the container home in the low- to mid-$200,000 range.

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Reg Chapman