6-Ton Shipping Containers Converted Into Apartments in Brookland

Recycled and remodeled shipping containers are being turned into an unusual new apartment building, changing the look of one D.C. neighborhood.

A whole complex of new condos, apartments, stores and restaurants is emerging on Monroe Street NE in Brookland, and nearby on Seventh Street, 18 six-ton shipping containers are being stacked to make 24 one-bedroom apartments mostly for student housing.

The project doesn't need special zoning, lead architect Travis Price said, and the 10-foot high containers are perfect for small apartments and equal to but less expensive than regular construction.

“The ground floor underneath will be apartments, then there's going to be six times three -- three stories, three across,” Price said.

The container complex replaces a 100-year-old house that had fallen into disrepair. Matthew Grace, a 2005 graduate of Catholic University, owns the old property and lived in it for six years.

After last winter, the house needed major repairs, so Grace decided to do something different with the property instead.

His fiancée, fellow Catholic University graduate and project architect Kelly Davies said they intend to get the project finished before their wedding.

“We're getting married in September and come, I don't want to say come hell or high water, we are getting this done before we go away,” she said.

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