Zigloo.ca and the zigloo domestique project has garnered alot of attention over the past 3 years. There have been so many newspaper columns, magazine articles and web blogs that I finally decided to get some High Quality Publication Photos taken by Nik West. This is a sample of the photos.


  • 1,920 sqft (180 m²)
  • 8-20' containers
  • 3 bedrooms/2 bathrooms
  • saved 70 trees
  • salvaged exterior stairs
  • available for purchase


  • Nav says:

    How is the building heated and is the ceiling height the original height of the container?

    What was done with the original floor of the container?

    Everything looks great from the exterior design to the interior.

  • keith says:

    The heating system for the house is in the floor. Hot water tubes are integrated to the concrete floor finish. It provides year round comfortable temperatures in a very efficient hot water-on-demand boiler system.
    The containers are standard 8′(w) x 20′(l) x 8.5′(h). All end of life purchased for scrap metal costs. The tops of each container were removed and the metal has been repurposed as a perimeter fence around the property’s perimeter.

  • Graeme rodger says:

    why did you remove the tops ?, and is it possible “legally” to have them stacked and welded together ??

  • keith says:

    I removed the tops on zigloo domestique (and on other CargoSpace Living projects) to improve the interior height of each floor. The container’s interior heights are 8′ clear from floor to underside of the ceiling. When the concrete and in-floor heating system was installed the height reduces to 7’10”. To prevent cold (and heat) from conducting through the steel lid approximately 4.5″ of insulation and framing would be necessary which would reduce the ceiling height to 7′ 5.5″. As the standard in North American buildings is a minimum 8′ ceiling height, the solution was to remove the lid, and jack up the second storey by the hight necessary for insulation and finished ceiling. The finished height of the main floor in zigloo domestique is 8′. The upper floor is a curved vault starting 7′ 10″ rising up to 10′.
    High-cube containers are 9′ interior height. When it makes sense to use high-cube containers it is possible to get 8′ 7.5″ without removing the container lid.

  • Marko says:

    How long did the project take to come together? Which part was most time consuming, was it the concrete? Lastly, what was your final cost? I absolutely love this home and am considering something similar for myself.

  • keith says:

    It is important to remember that the zigloo domestique is a prototype. What I was trying to prove was that for the cost of building a spec quality home (low cost, builder efficient quality, suburban location), you can build designer quality (high quality, environmentally friendly, customized spaces) by using containers as the backbone of the project. In the Victoria area, spec quality building is done for about $150/sqft, while designer quality building is done for $225-$250/sqft. We were able to accomplish zigloo domestique for $180/sqft ($360,000 CDN). Of course, the cost to construct depends on labour costs in your area, but I figure we saved approximately $70/sqft ($140,000). The build took 8 months, although there was a 2 month work stoppage to wait for the correct windows to be built and delivered on site.

  • Luc says:

    Love your home. You did a fantastic job finishing the interior. I would be interested in building something like this for myself and my family, where should I start. Any good books on the subject?

  • keith says:

    Start with the FAQ page. It describes some of the things to consider when designing with containers. It also discribes how to reach me directly – I’d be happy to discuss your container aspirations with you some time.

  • serge d. holly says:

    interested to buy a container home with 2 bedrooms

  • keith says:

    Have a look at the Eco-Cargo and 2×4 concepts. The potential to do a custom design also exists. Check out the CONTACT page and give me a call if you would like to proceed.

  • I met your Mom in Newfoundland this morning & she told me about your website….This is beautiful, Keith! Is this the home you live in yourself? Very unique idea:)

  • Wesley says:

    I love this design and amazing interior. I am seriously contemplating about building my first house from containers. What is the lifespan of a container house such as this?

  • keith says:

    Thanks for the kind words.
    We will be releasing the plans for this design later this summer.
    The longevity of the containers has been proven by the industry that supports and maintains them in the roughest conditions on earth … the open ocean. I am confident that with relatively simple maintenance, these structures could easily last a century or more.

  • Lee says:

    Very cool design, but how do you get 1920 sq ft out of it?

    You say you use eight 20-foot containers, each of which is 8 ft wide… that works out to 1280 sq ft.

    So. forgive my ignorance, but where does the other 640 sq ft come from? Are we counting terraces, the roof, what exactly?

  • keith says:

    There is a full height basement that is the same size as the main floor (ie. 640 sqft) bringing the total to 1920 sqft. There are a number of different ways to provide foundation for container buildings and in this case the full height foundation made the most sense.

  • Christan says:

    I am your BIGGEST fan!!!

    I am planning to build with the total of around 1200-1500sq using the Zigloo Domestique facade as a template(*I love hanging balconies)… By the way, could we have a roof top deck or a green roof just like your other project ?

    I would like to have 1 big master bed with one walking closet and attached master bathroom, small office, a small kitchen and 1 storage space (somewhere attached to the house or outdoor), and 1 car garage or a carport.

    Do you think that’s all that possible?
    PLEASE kindly e-mail me ASAP to discuss the details.

    Thanks in advance.

  • Nick Birks says:

    You mention that a container home built to typical design standards would cost CDN $225 – $250 per square foot. Does this factor in the cost of the land or is that a separate cost?

  • keith says:

    In any custom new home design, the cost per sqft is independent of land costs and landscaping. The $250/sqft price point generally includes all living spaces, full height basements and attic areas. It is assumed that a garage also fits into that calculation.
    Although we didn’t incorporate a garage into zigloo domestique, we were able to achieve a level of detail comparable to that of a designer quality new home ($250/sqft) for something closer to suburban “spec” level pricing ($180/sqft). A rough savings of $70/sqft.

  • Natalie says:

    Wow! Simply AMAZING, this chain link fencing inside is just awesome, it gives the interior such a cool contemporary urban feel. i love the mixture of utility and the contemporary aesthetic!

  • mohammad minaeipour says:

    Do you plan to sell put and architectural structure ?

  • keith says:

    We do! I expect that zigloo domestique will be the next set of plans up on the purchase portion of the website.
    I will add your name to a list of people to contact when it becomes available.

  • Vi says:

    I like this. I’d want to paint the outside of the containers and try to disguise or fix some of the dents and dings on them, and could stand to cover up the numbers and ID info on the container door. I love the claw foot tub. I only have about 7 of them, counting the one in my antique house we live in. I intend to use a couple in the house we want to build. I could stand to lose the chain link fencing inside though. A little to industrial for the rest of the house. It is really nice.

  • Adrian says:

    Your homes are amazing!!! I have been looking to build a Container home for a long time…. since I worked with my father as a long shoreman. Nice work! Can’t decide which plan to purchase?!

  • Nav says:

    That’s not bad at $180/sqft. I wonder if it would make much of a difference in price /sqft if one would use basic materials for the interior finish. For example using lower end cabinets, counter tops and fixtures etc.

    Keith, you mentioned that you used Soy based insulation. was that a personal choice over standard insulation? How much did it cost over standard insulation?

    How about some basement pics.

  • Christopher says:

    Hello, I think this concept is perfect use of left over containers and should be looked at as a mainstream way of building homes today. This would allow for much quicker and cheaper living structures for people on lower incomes. In the home you currently live in, you removed the tops of the cans which is understandable but how was the interior construction completed then. Did you go with standard building construction (2×4, 2×6). We currently live in Langley and I have inquired on building permits for this type of home and was told I would need a non conventional building permit, how did you get around this.

  • keith says:

    We removed the lids, inserted spacers between stories and placed the second level of containers on the spacers. This allowed us to strap the floor of the containers above, insulate (spray foam) and drywall the ceiling at a height of 8’3″.
    As for the building permits … the building department may require a structural engineer to sign off on the structure (relieve the city of liability) and you will have to sign documents saying you are an “owner-builder” even though you can hire others to do the building … this relieves the builder of having to provide the standard New Home Warranty.

  • ibrahem jawa says:

    I am pleased to see these pictures of this beautiful house right at the top of magnificence

  • rosemarie ifill says:

    Do you sell plans for the container houses and how much does it cost for a plan

  • keith says:

    Please see the PURCHASE portion of the website

  • Jesse says:

    Is this type of build possible for you to do out of Canada, in particular the US in Chicago, IL or Miami, FL?
    What would be the ball park figure of its cost if done in those cities mentioned above?

  • keith says:

    The learning curve on this project was significant. There are certainly efficiencies that can benefit from the experience I have gleaned doing it once. I imagine $125/sqft in some areas of the US is feasible.

  • Amy says:

    Saw your home on tv one day and I am completely inspired by it! Hoping to see more of your work more widely available in the near future. I will be keeping a close eye on your website as I’m hoping to use one of your designs in Ontario in the next couple of years. Great work!

  • Rabih says:

    Do you think the palo alto municipality in California will be willing to grant a building permit for an Eco cargo container home ? If yes, how would you recommend I proceed ?
    Thank you,

  • JamesAMichaelCSWyatt says:

    ANOTHER WHO IS ‘THINKING’ AND INNOVATING. You are much appreciated by those who enjoy folks who set out to not only ‘make do’ with what is readily available but vastly improve beyond all expectation the results and you most certainly have done just that and beautifully so. Those of us who are now ‘old folks’ and who are of like mind find folks like you a veritable asset in this day and age in which ‘lasting accomplishment’ gives way to the ‘use and dispose’ mindset; the ‘crackerbox’ housing construction seems the well illustrate that concept. May you and you loved ones be forever blessed and that, Dear Follow, is only possible in one way; that Our Creator, Our Triune God’s Way.

  • Dave says:

    Wow this is awesome! Would love to try this for my family! Don’t suppose you wrote a DIY book for this project, did you? If not, it would be cool if you did! I’d buy that!

  • Roberta says:

    I have to say that I’m completely in love with this house. I love the sort of chiken wire that separates the stairs and I also levd the distribution of the rooms.
    Great job!

  • Ezequiel says:

    Hi! I love this project!! I’m living in Argentina, can i purchase this and pay for the construction and everything it takes? That would be awesome!!

  • keith says:

    Zigloo.ca is a cre-innovative design office. We provide custom conceptual design services, that include construction drawing documents and details. With “google earth” and aerial photography it is possible to get preliminary information about the building site. We have been doing remote projects this way and we involve local engineers and architects to help out with the bylaws and municipal codes etc… zigloo.ca works hand-in-hand with developers, contractors or project managers to bring CargoSpace Living to life.

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