The new six-story housing project IDA on McKinley in Downtown Phoenix is paving the way to sustainable living by utilizing old shipping containers and other eco-friendly features.
Located at McKinley and Third streets, the top five stories of the complex are built with 66 used and repurposed shipping containers, each 40 feet long. Standing at 85 feet tall, the structure is the tallest shipping container apartment in America.
Its ground floor, which will only be used for commercial space, is made of prefabricated cement culvert boxes and features large windows that almost stretch to the 17-foot-tall ceilings, plus two commercial suites that have close to 4,000 square feet of combined space.
IDA on McKinley offers a total of 18 short-term apartment rentals ranging from 650 to 900 square feet, including 12 one-bedroom and one-bath units and six two-story loft-style units with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and views of the city of Phoenix. Both set-ups come with a kitchen and contain modern features and amenities.
In line with the city’s sustainability efforts, grated walkways between units collect and store rainwater in a 3,000-gallon tank on the ground floor, while xeriscaping and bioswales around the building minimize water runoff and reduce the need for irrigation all to conserve water.
Additionally, the building uses a 33 kilowatt solar power system. Solar canopies on the roof patio and over the sidewalk provide shade to residents while also generating electricity.
To ensure the units stay cool and comfortable for renters in the desert heat, the apartment uses a closed-cell foam insulation and the metal shipping containers that make up the bulk of the building have a white, high reflective coating to reduce heat transfer.
IDA on McKinley intentionally does not provide parking spaces or structures, and instead encourages its residents to walk, bike or use public transportation. Filtered water bottle refill stations can be found on each floor, plus outside showers for bikers to use and electric bike charging stations are included around the complex.