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FAQ — HyBrid Cargotecture
Q: I am a do-it-yourself builder and would like to use your construction documents…
can you help me?
Please contact us to discuss our models, plans, and permitting. We provide consulting
services on an hourly contractual basis, for large and unusual structures. We work
for engineers, architects, and builders alike in this service.
Q: I like your designs. I am wondering how well they are insulated. I live in an
extremely hot and cold weather environment. Would these homes be able to handle
All our models are insulated about 15% above IBC and UBC building codes in the floors,
walls and roofs. The building can be placed in cold climates as well as moderate
to hot climates. The recycled plastic and soy sprayed-in insulation is more than
sufficient for most climates — R24 walls, R 44 ceilings, and R32 floors. The roofs
can handle 60psf snow loads.
Q: How much will shipping the Cargotecture from the factory cost?
Please provide us with your Zip code and address so that we can get an accurate delivery
cost to your location. It tends to be about $1.20 per mile per truck (up to 40’
on one truck).
Q: Do you have awnings for outdoor living, and decks to expand my livable space?
Options such as awnings for passive heating and cooling are available in 15’x10’
sections, and a simple design for a steel awning frame is also offered. Awnings are
assembled and placed on site.
Q: What kind of foundation is recommended?
The foundation depends on the soil and terrain on which you will be placing your
new HyBrid home. Proper foundation configurations are important. We recommend diamond
pier foundations - these are relocatable pre-cast concrete blocks seen at www.pinfoundations.com
and when they are sourced through HyBrid they have cargo container locking mechanisms.
The local contractor/ engineer (planning department or building department) must
approve them with your local structural engineering stamp. Full drawings from our
website will be available once your order has been initiated. Drawings will assist
you/ contractor in determining the right foundation for the terrain on which your
brand new HyBrid home will be placed. We advocate pier foundation systems as they
are less expensive than a site poured slab and they have been approved in seismic,
frost, flood, high wind, zones as well as areas with poor soils.
Q: Is the installation included?
If you are local to Seattle (or Washington State) our construction arm HyBrid Assembly
can build your foundation and set the home. If out of the area we will assist you
in selecting a contractor that can build your foundation and hook up your sewage
and electrical systems. The final installation (in most areas) needs to meet local
code requirements. Foundation blocks with cargo container connections are relocatable,
easy to install, and engineered for seismic, flood, high wind, and poor soils conditions.
They come shipped with the unit from HyBrid at an average cost of $220 per block
and most homes require a minimum of 6 blocks.
Q: What additional options, such as awnings, rubber tight roof for green roofing,
and decking are available?
Yes - please see the options tab of this website for specifics.
Q: Does the purchase price include all the electrical/water/washroom installations/connections?
Yes! New HyBrid homes are shipped complete - even if your model has a kitchen or
bath. Picture a complete inspection approved home, ready for move-in, sitting on
our shipping dock at the factory ready to go to your site. A local contractor (which
could be you) will need to arrange for electrical and sewage hook ups as well as
foundation work. In many jurisdictions, if your project is less than 200sf there
is no permitting process required.
Q: Is cargo container architecture appropriate for affordable housing?
Q: Why not?
Container based construction does not reduce the cost of permit-required components
inside. As a micro home the insulation, the appliances, and the windows and doors
are less common, micro-sized, or include upgraded performance, which makes these
components more expensive than appliances or insulation techniques commonly found
in stick-built construction. Lastly, the steel container conversion adds substantial
cost in the same way that a seamless heavy-gage steel siding installed on a wood-frame
house would add cost. All new cargo openings are engineered welded heavy-gage frames
which are more costly than a typical wood door jam and header. Foundation and roof
connections are simple but are unique to containers.
Most public agencies supporting affordable housing have found that first time homeowners
aspire to live in a typical house and not in an emotionally visceral building system.
HyBrid is an award winning firm for affordable housing which we design in wood kits,
wood panels, and wood modules where there is more flexibility of space for a target
family of varying size. Cargo homes have many strengths but reduced cost at small
scale is not something they do well.
Q: What are the best reasons for selecting Cargotecture for my retreat, DADU, or
These special homes and offices are sustainable, smart, modern, and are durable enough
to last several generations - not to mention just plain COOL!. They are relocatable
(including their foundations). The off-grid upgrade means that these can move from
season to season such as a fish camp or surf shack. They can be secured against
intruders and storms. They are nostalgic for their globetrotting history. Lastly,
they travel easily on typical trucks, ships, and trains. This is a unique luxury
retreat which can be a transferrable asset for many generations.
Q: Where do you deliver to?
We ship world wide.
Q: Are you in a position to build with my own designs?What is maximum size that
you can do?
We can do some minor customization. The cost will be quoted on a separate basis and
might take longer to complete these drawings. Please see the "custom designs" tab
on this website for more information.