Dockland’s shipping heritage is inspiration for student’s homeless project
Martin designs shipping container homeless shelter
An architecture student from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has come up with an innovative way to help Preston’s growing homeless community and celebrate the dockland’s heritage at the same time.
Martin Quint, who is in the final year of a five year architecture degree, used Preston Dock’s shipping history as the inspiration behind his University project to design a multi-purpose homeless shelter out of shipping containers that would sit at the dock’s basin at the end of Lockside Road.
The 25-year-old has not only envisaged accommodation in his plan but also includes catering and laundry facilities alongside workshop space and a pop-up health centre. His design uses up to 71 shipping containers that would act as accommodation for 24 people but also as a day centre for many more people to access. As the shipping containers are unattached, Martin has also suggested that they can be removed or added to the site to suite demand. To come up with the design he worked with The Foxton Centre, which has helped rough sleepers and other vulnerable people for the last 40 years, to make sure it fitted with what the community needs.
"I wanted to take the opportunity to suggest a solution to Preston’s homeless crisis that would directly help people who may be reluctant to go to shelters."
He said: “I wanted to take the opportunity to suggest a solution to Preston’s homeless crisis that would directly help people who may be reluctant to go to shelters. By liaising with the team at the Foxton Shelter I made sure that the key needs of the people the shelter would be aimed at are addressed. It is simply not enough to put a roof over someone’s head, I wanted to design something that would provide a variety of facilities to give residents support, encouragement and the tools they need to get back on their feet.
“It was important that my design reflects the rich heritage of Preston Docks. By using shipping containers as the main part of the building it serves as a memorial to the Dock’s history and its original purpose.”
Martin was partly inspired to design the building through his placement year at Go Greena, a company that promotes sustainable living ideas in deprived areas of Manchester. The budding architect, who will collect his master's degree from UCLan in July, is planning to head back to his home town in Eastriggs, Scotland, to work for a local architecture company that is currently being set up.