Shipping containers.

Coming from the Airport, which is on another island, to Hong Kong, we usually take the underground/under-harbor MTR (public transit) but it is a really cool drive, especially going through the port.

Ever since Season Two of The Wire, set on the Baltimore docks, I’ve been pretty into containers. I love their bright colors and think they sometimes combine to create brilliant patterns that you could even call pretty.

I took to noticing all the cargo ships leaving for China under the Golden Gate in my runs back home. The problem, of course, is that those ships are usually empty. It’s the ones coming into S.F. from China that are full:

Flickr, jonathanpercy

Depending on how you measure it, Hong Kong is one of the five or six largest ports in the world–an honor we share with Singapore, Rotterdam (Netherlands), Panama, Suez, and Shanghai.

I’ve seen two interesting children-related container activity around the web as of late.

Shipping containers turned into a playground by Phoeey Architects:

A shipping container playground

The Wooden Toy Ship mini-series by Postler Furguson has used traditional wooden blocks to create models of three of the largest cargo ships on earth.

From Postler Furguson:

“The Emma Maersk, Arctic Princess and TI Asia are three of the largest cargo ships in the world transporting goods over thousands of miles from continent to continent. From the crude oil pumped into the belly of the tanker in the south Chinese sea to the refinery which produces the main synthetic raw materials to be delivered to factories and manufacturers around the globe, these giant machines are an overlooked but integral part of our daily lives.”

I adore wooden blocks and think they will always be the coolest toy out there. But wouldn’t it be even cooler if your kid was learning about our complex shipping infrastructure while playing around with them?

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8 responses to “Shipping containers.

  1. Hey! Just found your blog and this is the first thing I read… Love it! My background is in Supply Chain / Logistics and I’m facinated by shipping yards. I toured the one in Shenzen a couple years ago and I was like a kid on Christmas. It was amazing. How effectively we can move things through the global network is increasingly important – I’m glad you took note of it here.

  2. Thanks for the nice comment. I am seriously fascinated by ports and all things ship-related to I will have to pick your brain the next time we hang out!! xoxox

  3. Hey Tash,
    Great post! There’s actually an ND grad who started a company that is building homes out of shipping containers for under $15,000. Pretty interesting and I think they’ve received some global recognition. Here’s an old article on it and a link to their company website.

  4. Oh containers !!! I am working in shipping and seeing a pic with containers not to mention Maersk container excites me 🙂

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