It’s EPIC, I tell you!

You see them virtually cutting the country in half, pulled in trains stretching from horizon to horizon.

You see them in traffic… riding tractor trailers like remoras, large metal prehistoric bugs prowling thru traffic.

You see them stacked… on the outskirts of town, looking like grafittied metal carcasses piled in mountains blocking out the sun.


You’re starting to see them as something more.

Brad Woodard of Channel 11 KHOU News recently talked to Vic Cherubini in Woodlands, TX about his building project.

So what? People (fortunate enough to be able to in this economy) are building all over, right?

Well, that may be, but very few are using ISBU (Intermodal Steel Building Units), or Shipping Containers to build “Enterprise Boxes”…

We’ve grown accustomed to hearing about ISBUs being used to house storage, but now, more than ever, people are starting to understand that these same steel boxes are the perfect beginning for “other ends”.

People call it the “Green Movement”.

Around here, we just call it “common sense”. It just happens to be “Green”. We’re liking that it’s good for the environment to use these boxes in a new way, once they get “cast off” but the way we see it here at RR, it’s really just a side-benefit of “taking something steel and then using it to build something strong.”

Brad (of KHOU) says:

“Builders are reusing shipping containers – like the ones you see trucks hauling every day – in their projects.

Builder Vic Cherubini is using 11 used shipping containers as the cornerstone for a 5,000-square-foot video-production studio near The Woodlands.”

The multimedia studio Brad is talking about is called the “Epic Creative Co-op” and the Woodlands is just outside Houston Proper.

Vic says: (taken from their website)

“Our mission is straightforward: epic creates awesome web sites, 3D animations, multimedia presentations, video productions and commercial photography all at affordable prices. We get the job done on time, on budget and try our best to delight every one of our clients with work we can all be proud of.”

The Co-Op is to become a multi-business enterprise, leased by several developing partners.

Even the staff of the incoming tenants is excited about it;

“The green factor of it is quite intriguing. We’re excited. When we talk to our clients about what we’re getting into, it turns their head,” Michael Huffine of Silver Rock Productions said.

If you read the blog regularly, you know that we preach the “Three R’s“;

  • Re-Use,
  • Recycle, and
  • Repurpose.

Vic Cherubini (being a “right to the point” kinda guy and not one to mince words) simply calls it “up-cycling“.

Take a bunch of these…

… and then turn them into this:

Admit it. You want one.

“If you take it and use it for something better than what it was intended for, it’s up-cycling,” Vic says.

The KHOU News Story goes on to say:

“Green factor aside, the structure itself is virtually hurricane-proof.

Note it says “Virtually” hurricane-proof.

This tells you two things.

First, the news reporter did his homework.

Second… Remember that NOTHING is “hurricane-proof”. People claiming to build “Hurricane-proof”, “waterproof”, or “fireproof” structures usually regret it, sooner or later.

The cool thing about ISBUs is that they lend their might to creating “highly resistant” environments, to (say it with me) hurricanes, floods, and fires from “Day One”.

That means that Mother Nature is going to have a harder time doing “The Three Little Pigs – Big Bad Wolf” act on your ISBU building.

I say that building using ISBUs means that you get a structure far stronger and superior to the “slap-ups” that we’re used to seeing springing up on very street corner and vacant lot.

Vic goes on to say:

“If I was going over Niagara Falls in a home of some sort, I think I’d choose a shipping container over a traditionally built house… I did not want a building like everybody else’s. I wanted something different and unique,”
he told Brad.

Now, I think Vic is crazy for thinking about going over Niagara Falls in an ISBU, but hey… it’d make great Pay-Per-View, huh? 😉

Learn more about this project (the studio, not the suicide ;)) and see a cool news video, click here:
The Epic Creative Co-op


Original Story goes to Brad Woodard at

Image Credits go to Vic Cherubini over at Epic Software

1 comment for “It’s EPIC, I tell you!

  1. Henaynei
    February 19, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    This truly is so awesome… It is inspiring to watch it take off and grow – I went to their site several nights ago and read and looked at all the updated reports and pictures. It made me smile 🙂

    Yes, it is inspiring… and yes, I truly want one – one to provide an affordable, warm and secure home for my family. We have none of that right now. LOL – I even drew up some simple plans several months ago. 😀

    We need a place where we can take care of my 90 year old mother-in-luv when she needs it and where my husband and I can be taken care of in our turn. I’m a nurse; I know what it takes, the room, and the accessibility. I desperately want to make sure none of us has to consider whether or not going into a nursing home is the answer, and leave a place that will be a blessing for our son.

    We’re two baby boomers and one wonderful loving mother-in-luv living in the mountains of NC. Our current home provides not a lot of warmth or security, but building another home is beyond our means. I once thought ISBUs would be an answer for us, maybe be really within our affordability. I know they are, for a lot folks.

    I’ve always been a dreamer and you can see the foundation of my dream in my comments above. But sometimes my dreams get too big for reality. I’m the only wage earner in our little family and I’ll never make enough to pay for a place that is $30/sf much less over $50. We couldn’t have afforded to buy this beautiful piece4 of property where we now live if it hadn’t been for the blessed assistance my mother-in-luv gave us. So, I continue to pray and hope I’ll be able to see and recognize it when G-d gives me an answer to my prayer, whatever may be His answer. 🙂

    But I can still cheer for those who are making such a difference! Building with the Boxes is a reality, a real way to do something meaningful with our entrepreneurial consumerism that rebuilds and repurposes our detritus while also building a positive economic future for people and communities.

    So, Hurray!!, for those with both the will and the means… they are showing the way for those who perhaps don’t know how to dream impossible dreams, folks who will follow in the footsteps of the true pioneers!

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